Israel Readies for 4th Dose, Booster Shots Required For Passport To Dine Or Exercise

Coronavirus czar Prof. Salman Zarka attends a press conference about the coronavirus in Jerusalem, on August 29, 2021. (Olivier Fitoussi/Flash90)

The country of Israel currently has a controversial policy of compelled vaccine passports, forcing citizens to receive COVID-19 vaccinations and show proof of such in order to participate in basic daily functions like exercise or eating in a restaurant.

Israel’s health ministry announced on Sunday that these vaccine passes will expire 6 months after their second shot, implying a potential plan by the government to force booster shots on its people multi-annually in perpetuity.

Who is considered to be vaccinated / recovered and protected?

  • A person who was vaccinated with two vaccine doses, within 6 months from the date of the second vaccination
  • A person who was vaccinated with three vaccine doses, a week after the third vaccination
  • A person who has recovered from coronavirus disease, within 6 months from the issuing date of the certificate of recovery (a resolution concerning recovered individuals more than 6 months after recovery who have not been vaccinated is being reviewed).
  • Anyone who recovered from coronavirus disease and received at least one vaccine dose.

    Part of a press release from the Israeli Ministry of Health 

The country recently has put out reports of waning efficacy on the Pfizer shot, with the previously predicted success rate of 95% now dropping to a lackluster 39%. Pfizer’s shot made up the vast majority of vaccines given to adults in Israel.

This news comes as Israel rolls out boosters to most of its population. On Sunday, Israel’s health minister granted access to a third shot for all over the age of 12 who received a second shot at least five months prior, the Times of Israel reported.

“From today, the third dose is available to everyone,” said Israeli Health Ministry Director-General Nachman Ash on Sunday, the Times of Israel reported.

Recent reports out of the nation say a fourth dose will also soon be released.

“Given that that the virus is here and will continue to be here, we also need to prepare for a fourth injection,” Israeli Coronavirus czar and Professor Salman Zarka told Kan public radio.

Zarka also suggested that such regular forced boosters maybe be a permanent part of life.

“It seems that if we learn the lessons from the fourth wave, we must consider the [possibility of subsequent] waves with the new variants, such as the new one from South America,” in an interview with The Times of Israel last month.

“And thinking about this and the waning of the vaccines and the antibodies, it seems every few months — it could be once a year or five or six months — we’ll need another shot.”

Israel has for a long and continues to be one of the most COVID-19 vaccinated countries in the world, with about 80% percent of adults in the nation having received both shots. In spite of this, the country is currently facing one of the largest Coronavirus outbreaks in the world.

This month United States is also set to roll out boosters, available to most Americans who were vaccinated for COVID-19 more than eight months ago.