Vaccination centers in Flanders will on Friday start sending out invitations for autumn vaccinations, which are scheduled to kick off on 12 September.
Starting the vaccinations on the 12th gives the vaccination centers enough time to cater for all vulnerable persons during the rest of September. By then, it should also be possible to innoculate them with vaccines adapted to the Omicron variant of the Coronavirus, Flemish Health Minister Hilde Crevits said.
"We expect Covid infections to go up again in autumn, and we must protect ourselves," the health minister noted. "The vaccines' effectiveness is gradually declining. Before the next wave comes, we therefore want to give all adults and all at-risk persons the opportunity, in good time, to bolster their protection with an autumn vaccination," she added.
"The most vulnerable people and those who work in healthcare will be the first to get that chance,” according to Ms. Crevits.
The first invitations will go out to people over 65, those at risk of severe Covid, and healthcare staff, followed by all over-18s who have previously received at least one basic vaccination.
In total, more than 4.5 million people in Flanders will receive an invitation for an autumn vaccination, including about 1 million persons over 65. As with previous campaigns, they will each receive that invitation by post at their home address, in their e-box or citizen's profile and by e-mail if that address is known.
As in the past, people will also be able to apply via QVAX to be called up quickly if a slot becomes available in the vaccination center - for example, if someone else does not accept his/her invitation.
An information campaign will start in Flanders next week, focussing mainly on vulnerable target groups.