Bulgarian Health Authorities Roll off Immunization Green Corridors over Vaccines Shortage

Health | February 25, 2021, Thursday // 11:54|  views

Vaccination “green corridors” will be temporarily rolled off until new shipments of vaccines arrive, Health Minister Kostadin Angelov announced at the beginning of the regular briefing on the current epidemic situation in Bulgaria, as quoted by BNT. We now pin hopes on Johnson & Johnson's vaccine, he added.

There is a trend towards increase of new cases of infection. But the number of vaccinated is also growing, the Minister reported at the beginning of the briefing.

For the past 24 hours, the new cases are 1,733. Of 12,066 tests taken, positive are 14%. The most are the new cases in Sofia - 464, followed byPlovdiv region with 139 and Burgas - with 94. There is also a rise in the number of people treated in hospitals– 4,202, of whom 369 are in intensive care units.

The health minister touched on the issue of delayed deliveries of the AstraZeneca vaccine. Yesterday it became clear that the company will not deliver the pre-agreed doses to our country on time.

"Dear representatives of AstraZeneca, we do not need your courtesy and polite excuses, we need vaccines," Kostadin Angelov said.

He added that there is only black and white in medicine and people are either healthy, or sick, or alive or dead. "Bulgaria does not need courtesy", the minister said, and called for the arrangements to be respected.

By morbidity rates Bulgaria ranks 22nd in the European Union and 5th in the Balkans in the last 14 days. We are in 14th place in the EU, summarized the data of the Chief State Health Inspector Assoc. Prof. Angel Kunchev.

On Bulgaria’s morbidity map 19 regions are in the "red zone", seven are in an "orange zone" and only two – Vidin and Targovishte, remain in the "yellow zone". For another week in a row, the highest morbidity is registered in Kyustendil, Assoc. Prof. Kunchev added.

It also became clear from the words of the Health Minister that AstraZeneca's vaccine delivery rates drastically differ from the commitments made by producers, and it looks like the trend will continue in the future.

"I would like to quote a few facts about the delivery from this company – 117,000 doses arrived on February 22 this year, which is 333,000 doses less than the company's commitment taken in February. On February 15, we were informed that by the end of February Bulgaria was to receive two shipments - of 87,000 and 54,000 doses respectively.

In fact, we understand that none of these deliveries will be made. The facts described above prove that AstraZeneca will not meet its commitment to deliver 142,437 doses by the end of February. Yesterday we learned with surprise that on March 1 Bulgaria will eventually receive 52,800 doses, instead of the expected 142,437. Within 3 days we have had extremely serious talks at different levels with the supplier company in question", said the Minister, quoted by BNR, adding that the global crisis asks for efficient solutions.

"Vaccines are in deficit not only in Bulgaria, and there are no vaccines because the suppliers are not delivering on their promises", noted the Minister. He assured that there was no health risk for people vaccinated with AstraZeneca. "Now the second doses will come, there will be no delays in the second dose administration," said Prof. Angelov, quoted by BNT.


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Tags: Bulgaria, vaccine shortage, green corridors


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