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I UNDERSTAND
English Section

Around 3 million Poles to get COVID-19 shots in Q1 2021: PM’s top aide

05.01.2021 11:15
Poland plans to vaccinate 2.94 million people for COVID-19 in the first quarter of this year, the prime minister’s top aide has said.
Michał Dworczyk, chief of staff to Polands Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, is seen on a TV screen as he holds a virtual news conference on Monday, Jan. 4, 2021.
Michał Dworczyk, chief of staff to Poland's Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, is seen on a TV screen as he holds a virtual news conference on Monday, Jan. 4, 2021.Photo: PAP/Marcin Obara

Michał Dworczyk told reporters that the Polish government was expecting vaccine deliveries from three international drug makers in the first three months of 2021.

Plans provide for 4.6 million doses from US pharmaceutical firm Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech, 800,000 doses from US drug maker Moderna, and 400,000 doses from German biotech firm CureVac, Dworczyk said on Monday.

He indicated that these calculations were based on the assumption that the Moderna and CureVac vaccines are approved and registered for use in the European Union.

"This works out to a total of about 5.88 million doses," said Dworczyk, who is in charge of Poland's COVID-19 vaccination campaign.

Considering that each patient requires two doses, around 2.94 million people could be vaccinated in the first quarter of 2021, he added.

A total of 92,220 people have been vaccinated for COVID-19 across the country so far, according to official data released by the Polish health ministry on Tuesday.

A new shipment of 360,000 doses of a COVID-19 vaccine developed by Pfizer arrived in Poland at the start of this week, eight days after the country kicked off a national inoculation effort.

Just over 6,000 vaccination sites are set to be available to citizens as the country rolls out its COVID-19 vaccination programme, Dworczyk told a news conference on Monday. Initially, the government planned to set up around 8,000 such sites nationwide.

A 52-year-old Warsaw hospital nurse on December 27 became the first Pole to be vaccinated against the coronavirus.

The government last month launched a media campaign called Szczepimy Się (Let's Get Vaccinated) to encourage Poles to get COVID-19 shots.

Frontline healthcare workers are first in line to be vaccinated, followed by pensioners in nursing homes, people over 60, police, soldiers and teachers.

Poles who are not in priority groups will be able to sign up for COVID-19 shots from January 15.

Poland plans to spend PLN 3 billion (EUR 675m, USD 820m) on over 60 million doses of coronavirus vaccines under the national inoculation programme adopted by the government.

Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki has described the initiative as the largest logistics operation in Poland in decades.

He said last month that his government had secured vaccines for the Polish population from six leading international drug makers.

Poland by Tuesday had reported a total of 1,322,947 infections since the start of the pandemic and 29,161 deaths linked to the coronavirus.

(gs/pk)

Source: IAR, PAP, TVP Info