Children under 2 years old to receive bronchiolitis shot from October

Catalan Covid-19 vaccine to be administered as booster during flu season

Barcelona's Vall d'Hebron hospital
Barcelona's Vall d'Hebron hospital / Laura Fíguls

ACN | @agenciaacn | Barcelona

April 3, 2023 12:40 PM

April 3, 2023 12:40 PM

The Catalan health ministry will start vaccinating children two years old or younger against bronchiolitis with a monoclonal antibody in October, minister Manel Balcells announced on Monday morning during an interview with Catalunya Ràdio.

Children born from May will get the jab, as authorities will immunize all those born five months before the vaccination campaign starts. These antibodies, the minister said, will prevent bronchiolitis and have between an 80 to 85% success rate.

Balcells said that immunizing children will be a "good strategy" as he hopes to have a "more controlled" bronchiolitis campaign next year after authorities were concerned during this winter as cases peaked.

One dose of antibodies will be administered, similar to but technically not a vaccine, Balcells said, describing them both as "defenses."

Covid-19, flu, and bronchiolitis

The bronchiolitis campaign will coincide with the annual flu vaccination campaign and Covid-19 booster shots for those aged over 60 and others who require the jabs.

Balcells hopes that these three campaigns will prevent the "triple epidemic" seen during the last months, especially during the last weeks of fall.

The minister also announced that the Covid-19 booster shot could be the one manufactured by Catalan company Hipra, after the European Medicines Agency gave its approval and it received the green light from the European Commission last week.

Hipra's vaccine could be delivered at "maximum speed" and available for administration this winter, Balcells said.