Getting vaccinated to limit infections: The vaccines for coronavirus are effective and safe. All HMOs have them available.

FAQ About the New Vaccine for the Omicron Variants

The HMOs lately began administering the vaccine for the recent omicron variants of COVID. The new Moderna vaccine is designed to target the variants that are common today, and therefore should provide better protection from the severe morbidity those variants may cause. There is a lot of misinformation online, so it is better to rely on credible sources, like the Ministry of Health and HMOs.

  • How is this vaccine different from the former ones?

    This vaccine is nearly identical to those who were administered in recent years. Like the former vaccines, it is a mRNA vaccine against one of the envelope proteins of the coronavirus. The main difference is small adjustments that make it specifically target omicron variants (XBB). The vaccine was tested on humans and found safe and effective, like the former vaccines, including against the common variants in the current winter (2023/24).

  • If I got vaccinated last year, should I get vaccinated again?

    Yes. The coronavirus changes, and to be protected optimally against the variants that are common today, you should get the new vaccine.

  • How will the vaccine protect me?

    The vaccine protects mainly from severe morbidity, complications and mortality due to COVID morbidity. Furthermore, the vaccine improves the protection from late and long-term complications of the disease (Long Covid) among all age groups.

  • I am not in a risk group. Should I get vaccinated?

    Yes. COVID hurts mostly people in risk groups, but not only them. Young people may also become seriously ill due to COVID. Furthermore, a rise in post COVID conditions was found, including cases of heart-related symptoms, higher risk of diabetes and other effects. The vaccine decreases significantly the risk of these complications.

  • Why should I get vaccinated, is the pandemic not over yet?

    COVID morbidity still exists. Just this year, around 1,000 people died from the disease and thousands were hospitalized. Over 2,000 of those hospitalized were under 60. The disease causes complications from which only the vaccine can protect.

  • The disease became milder. Is it really necessary to get vaccinated?

    The disease may harm us less than before thanks to the immunological memory accumulated because of former infections and vaccination. However, the virus keeps changing and new variants are created, while the acquired natural immunity fades over time. The vaccine refreshes our immunological memory and induces better protection from the complications of the disease.

  • Who should get the vaccine?

    The Ministry of Health recommends that anyone over the age of six months get vaccinated, and mostly people in the risk groups listed in the Ministry of Health website.

  • Do we have to get vaccinated every year? What is the point?

    Some vaccines provide stable protection for life and some should be given more often, like the vaccine for influenza. In the future there may be vaccines that will provide protection for longer periods and the virus may mutate less often. For now, it is recommended to get the latest adapted vaccine to refreshen our immune response and preserve a strong protection from the complications the virus may cause.

  • Vaccines for both COVID and influenza? Is it safe to get both of them together?

    Yes, it is safe. There are many cases in which multiple vaccines are administered simultaneously. Our immune system is capable of dealing with several vaccines at the same time.

  • If I have not been vaccinated for COVID yet, what vaccine should I get?

    It is assumed the entire population has been exposed to the coronavirus over the last few years. Therefore, with regard to the administered vaccine, there is no difference between those who have been vaccinated and those who have not - we recommend that everyone get a single booster dose of the new vaccine.

    The exception in this regard is children under 5 who may not have been exposed to the coronavirus: if they have not been vaccinated so far, they should get two doses of the vaccine. People who underwent a bone marrow transplant after they had gotten vaccinated, should also get two doses of the vaccine now.

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