NEW DELHI — India began offering booster doses of COVID-19 vaccine to all adults on Sunday but limited free shots at government centers to front-line workers and people over age 60.
The doses, which India is calling a “precautionary” shot instead of a booster, are available to people nine months after they receive their second jab, the Health Ministry said in a statement Friday. Those outside the two priority categories will need to pay for the shots at privately run facilities, the ministry said.
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On Saturday, the Serum Institute of India said it has cut the price of its AstraZeneca vaccine from $7.90 a dose to $2.96 for private hospitals.
India has so far vaccinated about 96% of those aged 15 years and older with at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose, while about 83% have received both shots, according to official data.
India has recorded a steep decline in coronavirus cases in recent weeks, with the Health Ministry reporting 1,054 cases in the latest 24 hours.