Dr Constantinos Tsioutis, Assistant Professor, Internal Medicine & Infection Prevention and Control at the Department of Medicine of the European University Cyprus, told CNA on Wednesday that restrictive measures will continue, based on the epidemiological picture, even after vaccinations start.
In statements to the Cyprus News Agency, Tsioutis said that a high percentage of the population must be vaccinated in order to be able to say that we are safe adding that according to the vaccination programme, this should happen until the summer.
He pointed out that targeted measures will continue to be in place until then, based on the epidemiological data, but noted that the measures will not be as strict as they are now.
The priority of the vaccination programme, he added, is to protect the population that is more likely to have a severe illness, or even die, and secondly, to protect the hospitals, by reducing hospitalisations through the vaccination and by protecting health professionals.
He said that depending on the availability of the doses, vaccinations will continue to cover the remaining groups of the population.
Tsioutis said that a person who is vaccinated with the vaccines that exist now, will have immunity to the virus one month after the first vaccine.
The general estimation in the world, he said, is that we will have to wait until the summer for a significant number of people to have been vaccinated. But he pointed out that some protective measures will still be in place.
Replying to CNA questions, he said that the vaccine has been proven to be effective and added that vaccines that are expected to be approved soon have shown that they are even more effective than the scientists estimated.
Tsioutis said that tens of thousands of volunteers have been vaccinated so far and currently hundreds of thousands of people in other countries have been vaccinated and nothing alarming has been reported.
He explained that any side effects from a vaccine appear in their vast majority in the first days after vaccination.
Concluding, he added that “some isolated cases have been reported, which are to be expected, such as vaccine allergy, but their frequency is extremely low.”