COVID-19: Booster vaccination from next week
Bern, 06.10.2022 - From Monday, 10 October 2022, a further COVID-19 booster will be available to the public. The FOPH and the Federal Commission for Vaccination (FCV) recommend the booster primarily for persons at especially high risk and health professionals. However, the vaccine is also recommended for anyone aged over 16 years. The cantons are responsible for implementation. The costs for the booster will be covered by the Confederation.
Both the number of reported cases of SARS-CoV-2 infections and the proportion of positive tests are currently increasing significantly. This development has also been observed in national wastewater monitoring, where the viral load measured in wastewater is rising. The number of intensive care beds occupied by COVID-19 patients and reported deaths remain at a very low level. A further increase in infections should be expected.
The revised COVID-19 vaccine recommendations come into effect on Monday, 10 October 2022. A further booster can contribute to reducing the number of severe cases and thus to preventing the healthcare system from becoming overstretched in autumn and winter.
The vaccination recommendation is aimed as a priority at especially vulnerable people, i.e. people aged over 65 years and those with an increased individual health risk, for instance due to a pre-existing illness or pregnancy. This group is at the highest risk of contracting severe COVID-19. A booster at least temporarily improves their individual protection against severe symptoms.
As a second priority, the recommendation applies to people aged between 16 and 64 years without risk factors, who work in acute and long-term care or look after especially vulnerable people professionally or privately. A booster offers these individuals a certain protection against infection accompanied by disease, and can also reduce absences from work to a certain extent.
There is also a general recommendation for all other people aged between 16 and 64 years without risk factors. For them, getting a booster is sensible after individual consideration and decision if they wish to reduce the risk of infection or a rare, severe form of the disease. Unlike at the start of the pandemic, however, people without risk factors are at low risk of contracting severe disease this autumn.
A booster in autumn 2022 is not recommended for children and adolescents aged between 5 and 15 years, as their risk of a severe form of COVID-19 is very low.
All vaccinations recommended by the FOPH and FCV are free of charge for the vaccinated individual.
Campaign to inform the public
The start of vaccination will be accompanied by a national information campaign. The focus will be on persons at especially high risk. They will be informed about the COVID-19 booster via diverse media and channels.
A booster with an mRNA vaccine from Moderna or Pfizer/BioNTech or with the protein-based vaccine from Novavax is generally recommended. Sufficient quantities of the adapted bivalent mRNA vaccine from Moderna will be available in addition to the existing vaccines at the start of vaccination. It is adapted to the Omicron subvariant BA.1 in addition to the original coronavirus variant. Both the existing monovalent and the adapted bivalent vaccines protect against severe illness.
In addition to vaccination, our own behaviour also contributes to protecting ourselves and others. In indoor spaces, where a lot of people from different households congregate, wearing a mask, ventilating regularly, sneezing or coughing into a tissue or the crook of your arm and thoroughly washing your hands regularly contribute to reducing infections.
Address for enquiries
Federal Office of Public Health, Communication, firstname.lastname@example.org, +41 (0)58 462 95 05
Infoline Coronavirus: +41 58 463 00 00, Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Federal Office of Public Health