A new coronavirus vaccine aimed at protecting people against both the original Covid-19 virus and the Omicron variant should be available in Northern Ireland by autumn.
Stormont’s Department of Health has said it is intended to be used as part of its autumn booster programme.
On Monday, the UK became the first country in the world to approve the jab for adult patients.
It is known as a bivalent vaccine as it tackles two strains of Covid.
However, UK health officials say people should take whichever booster they are offered as all jabs provide protection.
Across the UK, 26 million people are eligible for some form of booster, but Moderna, which is manufacturing the vaccine, thinks only about half that amount of doses will be available this year.
Last month, it was announced that everyone aged 50 and over will be offered a Covid booster vaccine this autumn.
Booster jabs will also be offered to:
health and social care staff
carers who are over the age of 16
people over five whose health puts them at greater risk,
people over five who share a house with somebody with a weakened immune system
Approval for the dual vaccine in the UK was granted by the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency on Monday.
In a statement, a Stormont spokesman said: “It is intended that the bivalent vaccine will be used in Northern Ireland as part of the autumn Covid-19 booster programme.
“The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) will advise on how this vaccine should be offered as part of the deployment programme.
“Further details on the booster programme will be issued in due course.”Tags: