Saudi Arabia's Ministry of Health has mandated Covid vaccination as a requirement for pilgrims arriving for Hajj this year.In coordination with the National Transformation Program (NTP), the ministry has set out a health plan for Hajj this year.
Saudi Arabia's Health Minister Tawfiq al-Rabiahhas announced that pilgrims rounding in for Hajj pilgrimage from abroad must complete two doses of any Covid19 vaccine approved by the World Health Organization. It is recommended that a second vaccine be given at least a week before arriving in Saudi Arabia.
Domestic pilgrims from Saudi Arabia must have receive two doses of any approved vaccine inside the Kingdom before DhulHijjah1. The plan also stipulates the need for the pilgrim to obtain an approved and negative COVID-19 laboratory test taken 72 hours prior to their arrival in the Kingdom.
It is also said that the ministry will not consider those at high risk of infection and to limit the age groups to between the ages of 18 and 60 only this year's Hajj.
According to the Ministry of Health, almost 60 per cent of the residents of Makkah and Madinah will be vaccinated before the start of the pilgrimage month (DhulHijjah).
Pilgrims will also be required to follow Covid protocols, including wearing a mask and maintaining a social distance. Health regulations issued by the NTP state that pilgrims and those serving in various fields during the Hajj must receive at least two doses of the vaccine at least one week before starting their service.