Greece announced on Monday that more than 2.5 million doses of the coronavirus vaccine have been administered so far to the general population.
Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said that 1.77 million people received at least the first dose, whereas more than 770,000 have received both doses.
These figures correspond to 16.75% of the total population in the first case and 7.45% in the second case.
The next due for appointments are people aged 55-59 and teachers, who can begin registering online as of Wednesday.
Those aged 50-54 will begin registrations for appointments on Saturday.
Σήμερα σπάσαμε το φράγμα των 2.500.000 εμβολιασμών στην Ελλάδα. Περισσότεροι από 1.770.000 συμπολίτες μας έχουν εμβολιαστεί με την πρώτη δόση και περισσότεροι από 770.000 με δύο δόσεις.
Κάθε εμβολιασμός είναι μία μικρή νίκη κατά της πανδημίας. pic.twitter.com/UMDPTU4xh3
— Prime Minister GR (@PrimeministerGR) April 19, 2021
The rate of vaccinations in Greece is about the same with the rest of the European Union countries.
With the world’s highest COVID-19 vaccination rate, Israel recently has begun employing a vaccine passport program that allows immunized people access to a normality that’s denied people who’ve not had the shots.
Half of all American and British adults have now received at least one dose of a vaccine.
Johnson & Johnson vaccine suspended in Greece
Greece suspended inoculations with the Johnson & Johnson vaccine due to begin Monday, head of the National Vaccination Committee Maria Theodoridou told a regular live briefing, pending European and United States agency reviews.
“We should wait for the conclusions of both the European Medicines Agency (EMA) and the US Food & Drug Administration (FDA),” added the member of the health ministry’s committee of coronavirus experts.
She said that health authorities in the US are looking into 6 cases of thrombosis out of a total of 7 million vaccinations carried out in the country with the Johnson & Johnson vaccιne. The people affected were women aged 18 to 48, she noted.
Theodoridou also cited data according to which 9 in 10 deaths in Greece involved people who had not been vaccinated, while only a small number of fatalities concerned patients who had been vaccinated with both doses of a vaccine.
Suspension will not stall vaccine rollout
Putting on hold the 33,600 doses of Johnson & Johnson’s single-shot vaccine Greece has received will not have a significant impact on the country’s unfolding national vaccination program, said Health Secretary General for Primary Health Care Marios Themistokleous at the briefing.
Only a small quantity of this specific vaccine was delivered to Greece, he pointed out, as part of the batch Greece expected from Johnson & Johnson until mid-May.
Another 300,000 doses, however, are scheduled for delivery in May, with some 960,000 in June. Greece is also vaccinating with Pfizer-BioNTech, AstraZeneca, and Moderna vaccines.
Last week, Greece announced that vaccination campaigns have begun on Greek islands with up to 10,000 inhabitants — including all those living there, irrespective of age.
Vaccine rollout in Greek islands
A total of 85 islands encircling Greece will soon see all their residents vaccinated against the coronavirus ahead of the planned reopening of the country on May 14.
The plan for reopening calls for all the Greek islands — magnets for international travelers — to be covid-free destinations.
The move will on the one hand speed up the vaccination campaigns ongoing around the nation and bring the deeply-desired herd immunity point closer.
Of course the knowledge that the Greek islands are basically Covid-free will be a significant advantage for the country on the worldwide stage.