COVID-19

​Updated info and official guidelines for daily life during COVID-19​ (based on ​Israel Ministry of Health​ website).

Vaccines​

Getting vaccinated to limit infections: The vaccines for coronavirus are effective and safe. All HMOs have them available.

COVID-19 Vaccine for 12-Year-Olds and Older

Three vaccines have been approved for use in Israel for protection from coronavirus, by Pfizer, Moderna and AstraZeneca. All of these vaccines were approved by the FDA (the American Food and Drug Administration), having been found to be effective and safe.

​Fourth Vaccine

In light of the spread of the Omicron variant and the current infection wave, the fourth vaccination of additional populations has been approved. T

he following may receive a fourth vaccine dose: Anyone over the age of 18 who has pre-existing conditions and risk factors associated with greater risk for severe illness, their caregivers and anyone else at high risk of exposure to a confirmed COVID-19 case in their line of work. 

The vaccine will be administered at least 4 months after the date of the last vaccination.

​Who is eligible for vaccination?

All Israeli citizens aged 5 years and older are eligible for vaccination against COVID-19.

​Even those who recovered from COVID-19 can get vaccinated if at least 3 months have passed since their date of recovery or the date of their positive result on a serologic test.

​How many vaccine doses will I receive?

Pfizer's vaccine:

Anyone aged 12 and older: The vaccine will be administered in two doses spaced 21 days apart, and after at least three months they will receive the booster dose.

Children and teenagers under 18 can only be vaccinated with the Pfizer vaccine.

Moderna's vaccine:

Anyone aged 18 and older: The vaccine will be administered in two doses spaced 28 days apart, and after at least three months they will receive the booster dose.

AstraZeneca's vaccine:

Anyone aged 18 and older: The vaccine will be administered in two doses spaced 28 days apart. The booster dose has not been approved yet.

For further inofrmation regarding COVID-19 vaccines please visit the ​Israel Ministry of Health​ website.

Testing

What test to take and when, where are the tests administered, how long does it take for results to arrive and what is a serologic test?

Test Types

What is tested in COVID-19 tests?

COVID-19 tests search for coronavirus (or the genetic material thereof, to be exact) in the oral and nasal cavity. This way it is possible to tell whether someone has been infected with coronavirus, whether symptomatic or asymptomatic.

Those who tested positive on a COVID-19 test is considered to be confirmed COVID-19 patients (sometimes they are also called "active patients").

Types of COVID-19 tests

There are two types of medically valid COVID-19 tests:

  1. PCR test is a test for the diagnosis of COVID-19 patients and it is considered to be very precise. Results are supposed to be received up to 48 hours after sampling, but delays in result times are to be expected during peak times. For those aged 60 and older and those in at-risk groups – it is recommended to take a PCR test when necessary to get tested. From now on, people aged 30 and older can take a PCR test at the HMO clinics or Home Front Command compounds.
  2. ​Rapid (antigen) test is slightly less sensitive than the PCR test but it allows for rapid detection, as it is not sent to a lab.

Rapid (antigen) test​

There are 2 types of rapid tests:

  • Supervised test – test administered by professional samplers in one of the authorized testing sites. Result is usually received within 15 to 30 minutes after sampling.
  • Home test– rapid test that can be privately purchased and self-administered at home.

Serologic test

Serologic test is a blood test for the detection of antibodies to coronavirus (as opposed to COVID-19 tests, which are designed to detect the virus itself using swabs).

There are two types of serologic tests:

  1.  Anti-S type serologic test – if you have not been vaccinated, positive result on this serologic test indicates that there are antibodies in your body which may be indicative of recovery.
    This test is not intended for the confirmation of COVID-19 among COVID-19 patients who are already symptomatic, for those who are already considered to be recovered or for those who have already been vaccinated.
  2. Anti-N type serologic test – can also confirm recovery from COVID-19 among vaccinated individuals.
    Serologic tests are administered in the HNO clinics at the discretion of healthcare worker or upon arrival in Israel, in accordance with the Ministry of Health's policy on the matter.
For further inofrmation regarding COVID-19 testing please visit the ​Israel Ministry of Health​ website.

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