Today in Switzerland: A roundup of the latest news on Monday
From an announcement about second Covid boosters to government's plan to widen heroin distribution: find out what's going on on Monday in Switzerland with The Local's short news roundup.
Finally: some news about second Covid boosters
As Switzerland has not yet authorised the fourth dose of coronavirus vaccine for general population, people whose Covid certificates have expired but who plan to travel to countries where up-to-date immunisations are required, have been calling for health authorities to allow second booster shots.
Now the Federal Office of Public Health (FOPH) is doing just that, but with a condition attached: you will have to pay for the dose.
It announced that those going abroad can get “off-label” shots, meaning being vaccinated before the official authorisation to do so is issued.
“The price will be set by the cantons and the vaccination centres”, FOPH said, adding, however, that “second boosters for people with weakened immune systems will remain free”.
Health officials also said they will issue recommendations for fall and winter 2022/2023 before the summer holidays.
Government seeks to revise heroin distribution programme
Drug-dependent patients that are part of the official government project can currently obtain heroin on prescription, under very strict criteria. One of the conditions is that addicts receive their daily doses through 22 specialised distribution centres.
The programme has been functioning this way since its inception in 1994, but the government now says that getting to the official dispensing facilities is difficult for many addicts, and it wants to extend the distribution to include nursing homes, pharmacies, hospitals and prisons.
"We have to relax these rules to better serve the needs of the patients”, authorities said in a press release.
The proposed revision is now “under consultation” until September 30th.
SWISS still doesn’t allow unvaccinated staff to fly
Even though it is cancelling or reducing a number of its scheduled flights for reasons that include personnel shortage, the national airline is nevertheless refusing to allow unvaccinated cabin crews on board its aircraft.
SWISS remains firm in requiring all its pilots and flight attendants be immunised against Covid: in all, around 150 unvaccinated flight crews are not permitted to fly, according to SonntagsZeitung.
The newspaper reports that SWISS is one of only a handful of carriers that still require its flying personnel to be vaccinated.
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