People who had COVID-19 before are vaccinated once, a senior official in the Ministry of Health and Child Care has said.
Chief director curative services in the Ministry, Dr Maxwell Mareza Hove said the body of a person who has had COVID-19 has been put on alert by the natural infection and if they are not sick and are asymptomatic, they get a single jab which acts as as a second dose. Dr Hove said:
By vaccinating we are trying to sensitise the body to get alert that there is COVID-19 disease so it produces a certain type of antibodies.
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For those who have already had the disease, the body has been put on alert by the natural infection and if they are not sick and are asymptomatic, we can give them but as a second dose because they are already sensitised by the previous infection.
If the person is stable we give the vaccine as a booster so that the immune system is stronger.
Dr Hove also urged citizens to open up about their conditions to health staff so that it can be ascertained if they are ready to be vaccinated against the coronavirus. He said:
Those above 60 years are also being vaccinated but after the screening, because the elderly tend to have other conditions like diabetes, hypertension or respiratory problems.
When they are not stable or blood sugar is out of control we wait until they have been cleared by their doctor.
HIV is equally a chronic disease. If the viral load is low and they are taking their medication with no sickness, they get vaccinated but if the viral loads are still high we wait until that is controlled.