Sweden recommends 5th shot for people at risk of severe COVID
Sweden is recommending a fifth COVID-19 vaccine for people with an increased risk of severe illness, including anyone who's pregnant or over 65, health authorities said Tuesday.
The big picture: Sweden, which has taken a more relaxed approach to the pandemic, with the government holding out on requiring masks and keeping schools, restaurants and bars open, is believed to be the first country to recommend a fifth COVID shot.
What they're saying: "The vaccine is our strongest tool for preventing serious illness and death," Swedish Social Affairs Minister Lena Hallengren said during a press briefing on Tuesday, AP reports.
- "The pandemic is not over," Hallengren added.
Details: Sweden's public health agency said the fifth dose will be available beginning Sept. 1 and is aimed at preparing the country "for an increased spread during the upcoming autumn and winter season."
- Adults under 65 will also be allowed to receive a fourth shot, but it won't be required.
Go deeper ... Sweden's top epidemiologist defends coronavirus strategy
Editor's note: This article has been corrected to note that adults under 65 will be allowed to receive a fourth shot, not a fourth booster.