Issue 2, 3 March 2022

Newsletter for professionals involved in COVID-19 vaccination

The newsletter on COVID-19 vaccination is an RIVM publication with up-to-date information for professionals involved in COVID-19 vaccination.

Ministerial decree on repeat vaccination against COVID-19 (second booster vaccination)

In its advisory report of 17 February 2022, the Health Council of the Netherlands recommended offering a second booster vaccination to the most vulnerable people. This second booster vaccination is referred to as a ‘repeat vaccination against COVID-19’.

On 24 February 2022, the Minister of Health, Welfare and Sport (VWS) adopted this advisory opinion about a second booster vaccination. The following groups are eligible for this repeat vaccination, which can be given 3 months after the first booster vaccination: 

  • people aged 70 years and older
  • nursing home residents (including people living in residential facilities for the elderly whose risk level is comparable to people living in nursing homes)
  • adults with Down’s syndrome
  • people with severely impaired immunity (immunocompromised patients)

For people in these groups who had a SARS-CoV-2 infection after their first booster vaccination, the second booster vaccination is recommended 3 months after the infection. The mRNA vaccines Spikevax (Moderna) and Comirnaty (Pfizer/BioNTech) will be used for the repeat vaccination. Specific patient groups with compromised immunity will also be eligible for a repeat booster vaccination. In the RIVM COVID-19 working group on vaccination recommendations for immunocompromised patients, a more detailed overview will be developed to show who is advised to get a repeat vaccination and when. 

Ministerial decree on booster for young people aged 12-17 years

EMA has approved the use of Comirnaty as a booster for young people, stating that it is sufficiently safe and effective. On 24 February 2022, the Minister of Health, Welfare and Sport (VWS) decided to offer an optional booster vaccination for young people aged 12-17 years who have completed the primary course of COVID-19 vaccination. The Minister has asked RIVM and GGD GHOR to start implementing this in the near future. That means it is not possible yet. When it is available, young people in this age group can decide whether or not to get a booster vaccination based on their individual situation and, depending on their age, in consultation with their parents or carers. The Health Council stated previously that there are currently no medical reasons to offer a booster vaccination to young people aged 12-17 years in the context of the COVID-19 vaccination programme. However, the Council did recommend offering the option for booster vaccination in individual cases for severely immunocompromised adolescents and for adolescents who want a booster vaccination to protect vulnerable family members.

Updated implementation guidelines for COVID-19 vaccination

The implementation guidelines for COVID-19 vaccination have been updated. The latest version of the implementation guidelines is always available online (in Dutch). Section 1.3 outlines all major changes compared to the previous version; more minor interim changes are listed under Version Management (at the end of the document). The main changes are more limited recommendations for hand hygiene and the repeat booster (second booster vaccination) for people aged 70 years and older, nursing home residents and comparable groups, and adults with Down’s syndrome. 

Frequently asked questions

Adverse reactions

Lareb reports that diabetes patients may experience temporary fluctuations in blood sugar levels after receiving a COVID-19 vaccination. Both reduced and elevated blood sugar levels were reported. It does not happen very often.
See: Disrupted blood sugar levels in diabetic patients after COVID-19 vaccination (in Dutch)

The latest overview of adverse events following immunisation is available on the website of Pharmacovigilance Centre Lareb:  Adverse reactions to COVID-19 vaccines.


Editors: Vaccination implementation, National Coordination Centre for Communicable Diseases Control (LCI).

The newsletter is also available in Dutch.

For questions and/or comments about this newsletter, healthcare professionals can send a message to

Private citizens can call the public information number 0800 - 1351 with their questions.