A New Campaign of Booster Shots Launched Today at Laugardalshöll

Icelandic healthcare system

A new campaign of COVID-19 booster shots began this morning at the Laugardalshöll stadium. Everyone eligible will receive an invitation to accept an additional shot of the vaccine. The unvaccinated are encouraged to attend a so-called “open house” on Thursdays and Fridays.

A sharp rise in infections

In the wake of a sharp increase in infections – and following tighter social restrictions announced Thursday – a new campaign of COVID-19 booster shots began this morning for residents of the capital area at Laugardalshöll (individuals who had received the Janssen vaccine were offered booster shots in August).

The campaign’s first phase will last for approximately four weeks, that is, starting today and lasting ca. until December 8. As noted in Iceland Review last week, the health authorities expect to administer up to 10,000 booster shots per day and hope to offer all those who have been fully vaccinated a booster shot by March.

Those eligible will receive an invitation

The mRNA Pfizer vaccine will be administered at Laugardalshöll between 10 am and 3 pm today, Tuesday, and Wednesday. Everyone eligible to receive booster shots will receive an invitation; however, those who received a second dose of the initial vaccine six months ago may also show up to Laugardalshöll to receive a booster. Those who were jabbed during the first round of vaccinations this spring, individuals sixty years or older, or those suffering from underlying conditions will be given priority. (No vaccines will be adminstered on Suðurlandsbraut 34 on those days that shots are given in Laugardalshöll.)

According to the Capital Area Healthcare Centres’ website, six months must have elapsed between the second dose of the initial vaccine and a COVID-19 booster shot. Likewise, 14 days must have elapsed between influenza shots and booster shots. Those who have completed their initial round of vaccinations and have been infected with COVID-19 are to wait further instruction.

An open house for the unvaccinated on Thursday and Friday

Those who have yet to receive a COVID vaccination, or those who have yet to receive the second dose of the initial vaccine – or those who require a different type of vaccine – may show up at Laugardalshöll between 10 am and 3 pm on Thursdays and Fridays. The Pfizer mRNA vaccine will administered on both days. The AstraZeneca and Moderna will be offered on Thursdays and the Janssen vaccine on Fridays.

COVID-19 in Iceland: 7% of Icelanders 16 Years and Older Unvaccinated

Roughly 100 people have been vaccinated per day in the Greater Reykjavík area since July 1, including approximately 500 pregnant women. 7% of Icelanders 16 years and older are yet to be vaccinated.

“The occasional few who dragged their feet”

After the conclusion of the mass-vaccination campaign at the Laugardalshöll sports arena on July 1, roughly 100 people have been vaccinated per day in healthcare centres in the Greater Reykjavík area. Speaking to Mbl.is this morning, Ragnheiður Ósk Erlendsdóttir – Head of Nursing at the Capital Area Healthcare Centre (Heilsugæslan) – stated: “These are primarily Icelandic students arriving from abroad, including those occasional few who had, up to this point, dragged their feet.”

The vaccination of pregnant women began on July 29, with approximately 500 women having received jabs. “I think that’s a pretty good proportion, given that there are between 2,500 and 3,000 births in Icelander a year,” Ragnheiður remarked. “Teachers and school staff have been receiving booster shots since early August, and we hope to finish as soon as possible, considering that a new school year is about to begin.”

Booster shots for Janssen recipients to begin Monday

On Monday, healthcare workers will begin administering booster shots to those 53,290 individuals who received the Janssen vaccine and who have not been infected with COVID-19. These individuals can expect to receive an invitation today and will either be offered the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine.

Children between the ages of 12 and 15 will be vaccinated at the Laugardalshöll sports arena on August 24 and 25. Parents who accept jabs on their behalf will be asked to accompany their children and to provide informed consent. Approximately 35,000 vaccine doses will be required to fully vaccinate the entire age group. As noted by the Ministry of Health on August 10, given the supply of Pfizer vaccines and the delivery schedule over the coming weeks, fully vaccinating the entirety of the age group in September should be possible.

According to Covid.is, 86.3% of individuals 16 years and older have now been fully vaccinated, 6.6% have received one dose, and roughly 7% have not been vaccinated.

At least 130 new infections

130 new domestic COVID-19 infections were reported yesterday, 91 of those infected were not self-isolating. Thirty-two COVID-19 patients are currently in the hospital, including eight in emergency care. A total of 1,842 individuals are self-isolating and a further 920 are isolating awaiting results of PCR tests. 1,332 are in quarantine with an active infection.