Spain plans to start the Covid-19 vaccination campaign on 4 or 5 January

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The Ministry of Health wants immunisations to start at the same time across the country after the first doses of the Pfizer vaccine arrive.

Spain’s Ministry of Health and the autonomous communities are proposing that the coronavirus vaccination campaign will begin even before the arrival of the Three Kings.

Either 4 or 5 January are the dates being studied for the first immunisations to take place, explained Health minister Salvador Illa, once the European Medicines Agency (EMA) authorise the Pfizer vaccine at its meeting on 29 December and the European Commission confirms the go-ahead the next day or on 31 December.

The ministry wants vaccinations to start on the same day in all regions, although it fears that Madrid will prepare a separate campaign.

“The arrival of vaccines will be progressive and sufficient,” Illa assured during an event organised by the New Economy Forum.

“Spain will have 140 million doses. There will be vaccines for everyone and there will be plenty.

“We have everything prepared so that as soon as the doses arrive, the population can be immunised with all the necessary guarantees.”

In the first phase, health personnel, elderly people living in residences and those with disabilities will be vaccinated

Spain still does not know exactly how many vaccines will arrive in the first shipment , but last Friday, the 27 member countries of the EU decided that the distribution be equitable and simultaneous, to avoid a competition between the countries to see which one starts vaccination first.

On Thursday, Illa, announced that the first doses would arrive in “less than a month”, but did not give an exact date.

According to Ministry of Health figures, Spain will have 140 million doses in 2021, with which it could immunise 80 million people, almost double the 47 million inhabitants of the country.

It is expected that between 15 and 20 million people will have received the vaccine before summer and the entire population will have received it at the end of August.

The European Union, so far, has purchase agreements with seven pharmaceutical companies: Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca, Janssen, Sanofi-GSK, Novavax and CureVac.

Source: SUR in English, December 2020.

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