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Croatian government adopts COVID-19 vaccination plan

European Medicines Agency approves Pfizer's anti-COVID vaccine

ZAGREB, Dec 23 (Hina) – The plan for the introduction, implementation and monitoring of COVID-19 vaccination in Croatia, adopted by the government on Wednesday, aims to reduce mortality and ensure better health for citizens, preserve the functioning of society and reduce health, social and economic disparities.

Health Minister Vili Beros said that the role of vaccination in curbing the COVID-19 epidemic would be irreplaceable.

“An available, safe and effective vaccine will have a central role in saving lives, protecting the health system, accelerating economic activities and normalising the functioning of the education system and social interaction between people,” Beros said.

The plan strategically aims to achieve maximum availability of the vaccine for all groups of the population, and its purpose is to carry out COVID-19 vaccination in a coordinated and controlled way, with safe and effective vaccines after they have been officially approved by the European Medicines Agency, the health minister said.

The ultimate goal of the plan is to ensure the best possible response to the challenges of the pandemic, he added.

According to the vaccination plan, the first to receive the vaccine will be those who need it the most — beneficiaries of retirement and nursing homes, workers in the social welfare system and health workers most exposed to the virus, followed by other citizens — from the elderly and those most at risk to the youngest.

In Croatia, vaccination will begin on December 27. So far 5.9 million doses of the vaccine have been ordered, and it will be administered in two shots. The vaccination will be free and on a voluntary basis, and the money has been provided in the budget.

A public awareness campaign will also be launched inviting people to get vaccinated, and members of the government have today worn a badge with the message “Think of others, get vaccinated!”.

PM: We expect at least 70% of population to be vaccinated against COVID

Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic said on Wednesday that he expected at least 70% of the population to be inoculated.

The safety and efficacy of the vaccine is based on the results of controlled clinical trials, he said at a press conference, presenting a coronavirus vaccination plan which the government adopted today.

The vaccine will be evenly distributed and available in all counties on the principle of justice, solidarity and necessary care for the neediest in terms of age and job infection risk as well as the risk of a more serious form of the disease and complications.

We want as many people to be vaccinated as possible, Plenkovic said, adding that the success of the vaccination plan depended on how many people would want to be vaccinated.

Experts says that we will be protected as a society if 70% of the population is vaccinated. Our aim is for a minimum 70% of our population to be vaccinated. That will certainly reduce the pandemic which has claimed many lives in Croatia and the world, he said.

To raise public awareness of the need to get vaccinated, the Croatian Institute of Public Health has designed a campaign with the key message “Think of others: get vaccinated!”, emphasising the social responsibility which all people must show.

The arrival of the vaccine gives us hope that life will go back to normal next year, Plenkovic said, adding that this pandemic had resulted in an unprecedented social crisis on the global scale.

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