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What are the timeframes, doses and priority groups?

Posted: Tuesday, November 24, 2020 6:37 AM

The COVID-19 vaccination plan will be approved this Tuesday in the Council of Ministers, but there are already details that are known. An important novelty is that there will be only one strategy: the national strategy.

The design of vaccine distribution will be the responsibility of the Government, in collaboration with the autonomous communities. The goal is “that all priority groups have access to the vaccine”, in the words of Pedro Sánchez. With this national dimension, we try to ensure that there are no differences between the communities.

Will start in January

The campaign will begin in January, through the 13,000 “vaccination points” that already exist, which are health centers all over Spain: the national health system is ready “, said Sánchez, who gave as an example that this year 14 million people were vaccinated against the flu in two months.

Collective immunity

The president indicated that “a substantial part” of the Spanish population will be vaccinated in the first half of 2021. Although Sánchez did not give percentages, his Minister of Health stressed that he was aiming to reach 70% of the population, about 30 million people are vaccinated by the middle of next year.

How many vaccines will Spain receive?

The European Commission, in charge of purchasing the vaccine for the entire EU, has already signed contracts with AstraZeneca, Sanofi-GSK, Janssen, BioNTech-Pfizer and CureVac to purchase 1225 million doses in advance. , plus 580 million in reserve. Spain is responsible for 10% of these amounts.

When will the first doses arrive?

In principle, the first samples will be those from Pfizer, as it is the most advanced, before the end of 2020, according to Health. The laboratory reported last week that its vaccine was 95% effective and that it would seek authorization for its emergency use as soon as possible. For its part, Moderna plans to manufacture 20 million doses by the end of the year, and between 500 and 1,000 million in 2021.

Health Minister Salvador Illa has already announced that Spain’s intention is to buy more doses of the vaccine than the country needs to “be safe”. “We will buy the whole lot to make sure we have the first vaccines and all the technologies and, if any are left, in an exercise of solidarity, we will provide them to countries that may need them,” Illa said on the week. last.

Priority groups

According to the plan, older people who live in residences and their caregivers will start getting vaccinated, followed by doctors and nurses who work on the frontline against COVID-19, to cut off the possible route of transmission.

Vaccination compulsory?

Salvador Illa, in principle, dismisses it: “Experts tell us that it is not advisable to decree the compulsory nature of the vaccine”, he assured this week in the Senate, betting on “the truth” for that society undertakes to be vaccinated.

According to the CIS barometer of November, 47% of Spaniards would not be vaccinated immediately, against 36.8% who would. Those who are reluctant to get vaccinated are up three points from the October barometer, despite the fact that the survey was conducted around the time Pfizer published very encouraging initial results on the effectiveness of its compound.

Any euphoria must be balanced with caution

“Any euphoria must be offset by caution (…) We are working at full speed so that vaccines are available as quickly as possible”, declared the Prime Minister a few days ago.

From the government, both the President and the Minister of Health insisted that vaccines would be available at the start of the year and that Spain would buy more vaccines than necessary to “be safe”.

“We will buy more vaccines than we need because we want to be sure. We will buy the whole lot, to be sure to have the first vaccines and all the technologies and, if there are any, in an exercise of solidarity, we will provide them to the countries which they may need ”, declared the last week the Minister of Health, Salvador Illa.

However, the executive believes that we will have to continue living with the virus at least until May. The Minister of Health, Salvador Illa, asked the Spaniards to act with “caution” because if the epidemiological indicators are better than a few weeks ago, the situation is still “very worrying”: “How are we? We are improving, but we are bad, “It was resolved.

He also warned that “the environment is very unstable”, referring to the situation in other European countries, Spain must therefore remain vigilant. He also pointed out that “the light at the end of the tunnel” is already in sight, a “horizon” of hope which was set in May, when there should already be a “sufficient number” of people vaccinated for their allow it to move into a very different stage from the one we have right now. “

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