Turkish Health Ministry assigns booster shots to Sinovac recipients for traveling

Turkey's Health Ministry assigned booster COVID-19 shots to recipients of the Chinese-made Sinovac vaccine on Aug. 16. Health Minister Fahrettin Koca said that the booster shots were targeted at people who wished to travel, as "some countries only accept certain vaccines."

Duvar English

Turkey's Health Ministry doubled down on vaccination protocols on Aug. 16, assigning booster shots to recipients of the Chinese-made Sinovac COVID-19 shots.

All of the fully vaccinated Sinovac recipients will be able to receive a third shot regardless of their age, while the booster vaccine was only available to higher risk categories before.

Health Minister Fahrettin Koca said on Twitter that the booster shots were designed for people who wished to travel as the Chinese treatment is still not universally accepted to be a legitimate form of protection from coronavirus. 

"Only certain forms of the vaccine are accepted for entry into some countries. There has been a special arrangement put in place for persons who demand two doses of the mRNA vaccine. There is no need for additional shots except for traveling," Koca wrote in one tweet. 

However, the following tweet from the minister noted that there's no need for an additional vaccine for persons who received two doses of the mRNA vaccine, or three doses of the inactive vaccine, meaning the Sinovac. 

This is directly in contradiction to instructions from the state that two doses of the Chinese Sinovac shot were enough for protection. 

Meanwhile, all persons above 15 years of age have become eligible for COVID-19 vaccines, as well as persons with chronic illnesses aged 12 and over.

The waiting period for a vaccine after testing positive on a PCR test was shrank from three months down to one month.

Turkey's Health Ministry reported some 432 COVID-19 patients died between July 24 and July 30, while 129,716 new patients were diagnosed in the same period.