Vaccination Portal will open for all ages the next days and next Thursday citizens who were vaccinated with AstraZeneca and eight weeks have passed, will be notified for a reschedule of their appointment for the 2nd dose, Health Minister Constantinos Ioannou said on Tuesday.
Speaking during a press conference the Minister said that the aim to cover 65% of the population with the 1st dose by the end of June seems to be achievable, adding that since yesterday 45.2% of the population (334,258 citizens) got the 1st dose and 15.5% (114,476 people) finished their vaccination scheme.
He noted that the immunity we want to achieve is happening in a fast pace and when we shield our health we can get back to our normality, pointing out that all the sacrifices by everyone have now paid off.
He said that the vaccinations are now taking place on Sundays as well and the GPs are contributing with the AZ vaccines. So far more than 320 GPs participate in the scheme and they were given more than 26,000 doses.
The Minister said that for ages 70 and over, the inoculation is at 85% and the cases detected among this group are very few and the median age of the patients in hospitals is close to 60 years the past weeks, proving that the vaccination is beneficial.
He also said that as the vaccination moves on and more and more people get their vaccines, the need for a rapid test will also decrease however the rapid tests will remain in place because it is the means to assess the epidemiological picture of the population.
He added that based on figures, Cyprus has the 2nd lowest mortality rate because of Covid in the EU and this index is the most decisive one for the management of the pandemic in the country.
Replying to questions Ioannou said that 15,000 vaccinations with AZ are taking place per day by GPs and so far is estimated that those who got the vaccine in all vaccination centers across the island and 8 weeks have passed since the 1st dose are around 60,000.
As regards the 3rd dose he said that it is a bit premature to start the discussion on that as nothing has been scientifically proven. He noted that if EMA advises the countries for a 3rd dose, Cyprus will comply. He said that we have the vaccines and the capacity to do so as we have ordered 4 mln doses.
Asked about the batches that arrive, he said that Pfizer delivers 30,000 vaccines per week and from June 1st will increase them to reach 50,000 by end of June. AZ has not make any announcements for a period longer than 2 weeks, whereas JJ has not delivered this week nowhere in Europe. The planning is for 35,000 vaccines to be delivered in June and around 30,000-40,000 from Moderna.
About the Indian mutant detected in the UK and the arrival of tourists from the UK the Minister said that we will be sending samples to the ECDC to see whether the mutant is in the community but reminded everyone that Cyprus takes strict measures at the airports and many countries are in the red zone with the prerequisite of 2 negative PCR tests.