SINGAPORE, Sept 16 — Some 3,200 vaccinated seniors were the first to get a booster shot against Covid-19 yesterday (September 15), the first day such jabs were made available.

They included some residents of nursing homes who were approached by mobile vaccination teams under the Ministry of Health (MoH) and did not need to make an appointment to get the booster shot.

Health Minister Ong Ye Kung said in a Facebook post on Wednesday night that more than 12,000 seniors have fixed their appointments to get the booster vaccine shots within the first 24 hours of registration opening on Tuesday. 

He said that this was an “encouraging start” as he expressed hope for more seniors to come forward to take their booster shots.


Yesterday, a mobile vaccination team was deployed to NTUC Health Nursing Home at Geylang East, where 30 residents received their booster shots. They will continue to reach out to seniors at home.

Ong added: “To extend our reach, we are working with key agencies and stakeholders such as the People's Association and the Silver Generation Office to engage, educate and encourage seniors to come forward for their booster doses.”

There are about 900,000 people here aged 60 and above eligible for the booster shots.


“The booster shot will better protect you for many more months, or even longer,” Ong said to the target group.

He noted that those who had come forward to be jabbed so far had remarked that they want to be safe from the Delta strain of the coronavirus, or wish to get their booster as soon as they are eligible.

On September 3, the Ministry of Health announced that immunocompromised persons and seniors will be eligible for booster Covid-19 vaccination shots starting sometime this month, depending on when they had their earlier two doses.

A week after that, it said that seniors aged 60 and above as well as residents of aged-care facilities who have been fully vaccinated as of March this year would be invited to receive their booster vaccine shots from Tuesday.

Those aged 60 and above may opt in after receiving an SMS notification on their phones. 

The SMS will carry a personalised booking link that will be sent to the mobile number that they had registered earlier when they took their first two doses. This will allow them to book a new appointment online at

When introducing the need for booster shots earlier this month, Ong, who co-chairs the Government's Covid-19 task force, said that vaccines still offer protection against infection, but the strength of the protection will “come down as antibodies wane several months after vaccination”.

This is why those who are moderately to severely immunocompromised such as cancer patients will receive a third dose of the same messenger ribonucleic acid (mRNA) vaccine that they had gotten two months after their second dose as part of their primary vaccination course.

MoH said that immunocompromised people have a “blunted immune response to vaccination and are also at a higher risk of severe illness from Covid-19”.

The move was recommended by the expert committee on Covid-19 vaccination under MoH, based on the efficacy of booster doses administered globally, it added. ― TODAY