Please select your preferences to subscribe.

Bangladesh to vaccinate family members of frontline workers, aged at least 18

  • Senior Correspondent,
    Published: 2021-07-24 17:28:21 BdST

A health worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University on Monday, Jun 21, 2021. Photo: Mahmud Zaman Ovi

The government will allow family members of frontline workers who are aged at least 18 to get the COVID-19 vaccine shot, according to Health Minister Zahid Maleque.

The health ministry has already issued directions on the matter and steps are being taken to update the Surokkha portal to help them sign up for the jab, he said on Saturday.

The health minister highlighted the government's policy of vaccinating doctors, nurses, teachers and army and police personnel who are fighting the pandemic on the frontline.

"We have now decided to vaccinate their family members, who are above the age of 18. We have already received the approval of the prime minister. The decision is effective from now.”

"We will try to let them get the vaccine shots by using their national identity cards. They will be registered later. Instructions have also been given in this regard.”

Last week, Maleque also announced plans to lower the age of eligibility for vaccination to 18. Although he did not provide a timeline, Director General of Health Services Khurshid Alam said the authorities are working to implement the process.

Registration for the COVID-19 vaccination began in Bangladesh in January. Initially, people who were 55 years old or older were eligible for vaccination. The Directorate General of Health Services later lowered the vaccination age to 30 years.

People involved in COVID-19 emergency services, workers from a number of occupations, university students and migrant workers were able to register for vaccination, regardless of their age.