Tuesday, February 7, 2023

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Israel, Bahrain people lose vaccination status without boosters

A paramedic with Israel’s Magen David Adom medical service administers the third shot of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine on August 24, 2021 in Holon.

Ahmad Gharabli | AFP | Getty Images

Israel and Bahrain want eligible residents to take their Covid booster shots — and those who don’t do so risk losing their fully-vaccinated status, and the privileges that come with it.

In Israel, vaccinated people are given a so-called “green pass” that allows them to enter hotels, restaurants and many other indoor venues.

People who have recovered from Covid-19 can also be issued a green pass under a different set of guidelines.

As of Oct. 3, Israel shortened the validity of the green pass. According to a government advisory, the pass will expire six months after a person receives their second dose.

A third shot will have to be administered before a new green pass can be issued, at least one week after the booster. That pass will also expire six months after the third dose. It is unclear whether more boosters may be needed in future to be considered fully vaccinated.

Protests broke out in Israel over the new policy, and an estimated 2 million could lose their Green Pass, Associated Press reported.

Divided on boosters

Bahrain has different criteria for each of the vaccines offered. However, most people 18 years and above will be eligible for a booster shot six months after the second dose.

Data in the kingdom found that from July 1 to Oct. 1, 52% of those who were infected did not take a booster dose. By comparison, 3% of confirmed cases were in people who received a third dose.

“It is therefore clear that booster shots increase immunity,” a government news release said.

CNBC’s Berkeley Lovelace Jr., Rich Mendez, Natasha Turak and Robert Towey contributed to this report.

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