Bulgaria extends ‘green corridors’ for jabs against Covid-19 for all comers

“Green corridors” offering vaccinations against Covid-19 for all comers, irrespective of category in the national vaccination plan, will remain open daily, Bulgaria’s Chief State Health Inspector Angel Kunchev said on May 10 after a meeting of the national vaccination headquarters.

The corridors were open across the country during Bulgaria’s April 30 – May 9 holiday period. As The Sofia Globe reported earlier on May 10, during that time, 134 888 doses were administered, while 84 329 people got a second dose.

Kunchev said that the fifth phase of the national vaccination plan could now start. The phase targets specific groups, including people at refugee centres and in prison.

Regarding the “green corridors” he said that it would be up to the individual vaccination points to decide on their working hours.

He said that after May 20, it would be possible to store the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for four weeks, instead of the current seven days.

The Pfizer-BioNTech, and later the Moderna, vaccine is likely to be given to children over 12 years of age, while clinical trials are currently underway for children over six years of age.

Shipments of Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna and AstraZeneca vaccines are arriving in Bulgaria this week – today, and on Wednesday and Thursday, he said.

Ninety per cent of those due for a second dose of AstraZeneca have had it administered, Kunchev said.

On April 19, Bulgaria’s health authorities announced that those who had received AstraZeneca as the first dose but did not want it as the second would be offered the Pfizer-BioNTech jab as an alternative.

Kunchev told the May 10 briefing that regarding remote areas, from which general practitioners had to travel long distance to collect doses of vaccines, national health authorities would assist in supply.

“But I don’t think it will be possible to distribute the vaccines to GPs everywhere,” he said, referring to current practice of GPs having to go to regional health inspectorates to collect supplies.

Kunchev said that in the districts of Sliven and Yambol, interest in immunisation was quite low.

He said that it was impossible to predict what would happen in Bulgaria in the autumn regarding the Covid-19 situation.

“I am worried about the result of the (Orthodox) Easter holidays, as the number of people in hospital is starting to increase,” Kunchev said.

(Photo: Military Medical Academy)

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