Health Minister Bahram Einollahi announced on Monday evening that Iran will most likely begin rolling out fourth Covid-19 shots for adults in September and October.
“We won’t use the term fourth dose for the injection. While there is a pandemic going on, vaccination is essential,” the health minister said in a video published on his Instagram page.
Details of the plan to “revaccinate” the general public will be announced soon.
Iran is immunizing its population of 85 million people with a combination of homegrown and imported vaccines.
So far, over 64.2 million have been administered the first shot, 57.3 million the second, and the number of over 18 year old Iranians given the third booster shot has slowly grown to 26.7 million.
“Everyone needs to get vaccinated again since the body’s immunity against the disease declines as time passes and the immune system needs to be boosted once again,” Einollahi said.
The timing of another vaccination campaign aims to limit further outbreaks in autumn and winter, when university and school students return to classes.
Iran fully resumed in-person classes in early April in an attempt to return to pre-pandemic life and avoid more damage to children’s mental health and education.
Health experts have warned that the premature move could trigger another wave of infections as highly transmissible variants circulate in the population.
Over the past 10 days, 92 people contracted the virus and one to two patients died from it every hour. On average, 162 patients recovered from the respiratory illness every hour.
Since the start of the outbreak in Iran in February 2020, over 7.2 million have become infected with various variants of the coronavirus and at least 140,800 have lost their lives to it.