COVID-19 Booster Dose in India: Eligibility & Registration

  • Author :
  • TATA AIG Team
  • Published on :
  • 31/05/2022

Amidst the resurgence of COVID-19 cases across the country, precautionary measures to safeguard one’s health have once again become a priority. As virologists laboured to develop vaccines to curb the spread of the virus, individuals exercised caution on their part to keep the virus at bay.

However, as more infectious strains emerged, the Government of India rolled out the COVID-19 booster doses to strengthen immunity. Let’s understand the criteria for booster dose eligibility in India and how to register for booster doses.

Omicron Variant in India

The emergence and spread of the Omicron variant of the COVID-19 virus has been closely monitored across the globe, including in India.

By December of 2023, nearly seven months after the WHO withdrew the public health emergency warnings, the Omicron variant of the virus continued to mutate into several sub-variants, with the latest JN.1 causing a surge in COVID-19 cases.

Although vaccines have worked well so far in preventing severe disease, a waning immunity has been observed. Owing to its transferability, WHO has declared JN.1 as the “virus of interest.”

Fortunately, however, in several countries, including India, updated vaccine versions have been made available.

What is the COVID-19 Booster Dose?

The COVID-19 booster dose in India is the additional vaccination that is administered once the vaccination schedule of the primary vaccine is completed. The objective of this “precaution dose” is to prolong and enhance immunity against the persistent COVID-19 virus.

Despite the protection received through the initial vaccination, the potential need for a booster dose has been identified in light of emerging scientific evidence and the evolving nature of the pandemic.

The COVID-19 booster dose in India aims to strengthen the response of the immune system, particularly among those with waning immunity.

With that in mind, the booster dose for senior citizens has been made available for individuals above 60 years of age. This is done to prevent the risk of infection among those with waning immunity as well as for senior citizens.

The booster dose stimulates the immune system to produce antibodies, thereby enhancing the ability to fight against breakthrough infections and evolving variants. The booster shot is curated to build upon the protection offered by the initial vaccine series.

Subsequently, this contributes to the overall immunity of the community and reduces the severity of illnesses among those who have been vaccinated.

COVID-19 Booster Dose Eligibility in India

You cannot register for a booster dose until you meet the eligibility criteria. Here is what you need to know about the booster dose eligibility in India:

You must be fully vaccinated - meaning you must have taken the initial two doses. Only those who have completed nine months or 39 weeks after their final dose are eligible for the booster shot.

The booster dose age limit is 18 years and above.

You will be prioritised if you are a healthcare worker (HCW) or a front-line worker (FLW)

If you have comorbidities and/or the booster dose for senior citizens is offered for those above the age of 60

If you are travelling overseas, you are eligible for the booster shot three months after taking the final dose.

The booster dose can be administered at any government or private vaccination centre.

Guidelines for the COVID-19 Booster Dose

According to the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, here are the guidelines outlined for the booster dose of the COVID-19 vaccine:

The individual getting the booster dose should previously have taken both doses of the COVID-19 vaccine.

At the time of the booster shot vaccination, the individual must carry the certificate of vaccination bearing details of the previous two shots along with a valid proof of identity such as an Aadhar card or driving licence.

It is important to note that while getting the booster shot, the individual should provide the same ID card and contact number as was used for the previous vaccinations.

The government has not permitted mixing vaccines, so if you have taken Covishield for your previous shots, then your booster shot must also be Covishield. The same applies to Cowaxin.

There is no need for a new registration for getting the booster dose. A fully vaccinated individual who has registered already can simply book an appointment from their Co-Win account. There is also the option to walk into any vaccination centre to get your booster dose.

However, it is more convenient to complete online booster dose registration in India.

Even after you get the booster shot, you must follow the safety protocol to prevent transmission of the virus.

Step for Booster Dose Registration in India

The immune system in one's body can weaken with time. Additionally, the mutating strain of COVID-19 can escape the responses of your immune system. To prevent this from happening, researchers and doctors believe that the booster dose will lower the risk of infection.

Here is how to register for the booster shot via the CoWIN website:

Step 1: Visit the official CoWin website and add your personal information about yourself as prompted on the screen. You will also need to provide a photo identification card to register online for the booster shot.

**Step **As many as four individuals can register for their booster shot with the same mobile number on the CoWIN portal. However, every individual will need to upload their separate IDs for registration.

Step 3: Once all the details have been uploaded to the website, click on the ‘Confirm Registration’ button. You will then receive an OTP on your registered mobile number. Enter this code for verification of your registration.

Step 4: Finally, the registered details and names will appear on the screen.

Once the registration has been completed, you can book the booster dose of COVID-19 online.

How to Book Your COVID-19 Booster Dose Online?

Here are the steps to book your booster dose for COVID-19 online:

Step 1: Once you have registered yourself on the CoWIN website, you can go to the vaccination tab.

Step 2: Log in with your registered mobile number and punch in the OTP. The screen will then display your profile.

Step 3: As mentioned earlier, you are only eligible for the booster shot if you have taken the previous two vaccination doses. If you have completed both vaccination doses, you can check the available slots under the ‘Appointments’ section for this dose.

Step 4: Then go to the ‘Precaution Dose’ tab and select ‘Appointments’.

Step 5: You will then be asked to enter details such as your location, district, state, pin code, etc., and select the ‘Book Appointment’ tab.

Step 6: Once your appointment has been booked, you will receive a confirmation message. You can also get the details from the website or the app.

In Conclusion

So far, vaccines have worked well in preventing severe disease. However, there have been instances where previously infected individuals, as well as those who have received the initial two shots, have still contracted COVID-19.

So, in addition to getting the booster dose, it is also important to secure your health with comprehensive health insurance from Tata AIG.

Insurance providers have now included COVID-19 in their medical insurance to help those who are infected get proper treatment.

In addition to COVID-19 protection, our health insurance plans offer protection against a host of other critical illnesses by offering coverage via reimbursement for medical bills and hospitalisation expenses.

This way, you can focus on a speedy recovery instead of worrying about soaring medical bills.

However, before investing in health coverage, one must analyse healthcare needs, compare health insurance plans, and read the policy exclusions to make an informed decision.

Disclaimer / TnC

Your policy is subjected to terms and conditions & inclusions and exclusions mentioned in your policy wording. Please go through the documents carefully.

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