Measures are being taken to ensure that everyone will be vaccinated by the end of this year.
Shortly after the first phase of the Covid-19 vaccination campaign kicked off in Qatar, the health ministry announced that it is working with pharmaceutical companies to receive the second shipment “as early as possible.”
The next batch is expected to arrive in early 2021; those who are eligible will be contacted directly by authorities to ensure priority groups receive the vaccine first.
The ministry of health has requested other members of the community to wait until their turn.
While the number of reported COVID-19 daily cases has remained low, health officials are still reporting 150+ cases daily.
More than 1.2 million people have been tested for the novel coronavirus in Qatar since the beginning of the outbreak, which experts say has contributed massively to the country’s success in managing the pandemic.
The first batch of the coronavirus vaccine by German firm BioNTech and American pharmaceutical giant Pfizer, arrived in Qatar on December 21st, making it one of the first Arab countries to receive the vaccine.
Phase one of the campaign kicked off just two days after the vaccine arrived, and is set to run until January 31st. Priority is being given to seniors above 70 years old, people with chronic illnesses who are 16 years or above, and frontline workers in the health sector.
Following the first vaccination, recipients will receive a second dose 21 days after which is said to bolster the immunisation process and the effectiveness of the vaccine.
Clinical trials showed 95% of those tested developed antibodies after receiving two doses of the vaccine.
The first Pfizer vaccine in Doha was successfully given to 79-year-old Abdullah Al Kubaisi, former Qatar University president, earlier on Wednesday at Al-Wajba Health Center.
“We appreciate all the effort the government has put in to protect the people of Qatar, especially given the severity of the virus,” Al Kubaisi said to Al Raya before taking the vaccine.
Doha reported 197 new cases on Sunday, taking the number of active cases in the country to 2315.