The Ministry of Public Health has announced a major milestone for the National COVID-19 Vaccination Program with 81 percent of people over 60 years of age has now received at least one vaccine dose since the start of the program.
“Reaching this milestone of four out of five people over 60 years of age – the most vulnerable members of our population – being vaccinated against COVID-19 is hugely encouraging. After an incredibly challenging year for people here in Qatar, and indeed around the world, the roll out of the vaccination program is enabling people to become protected from COVID-19 and significantly reduce their risk of sickness,” said Dr. Hanadi Al Hamad, National Health Strategy 2018-2022 Lead for Healthy Ageing.
While anyone can become infected with COVID-19, it is older people who are much more vulnerable to severe complications from the virus. This means that older people are more likely to require hospitalization, including admission to intensive care units for life-saving treatment, than the younger age groups.
“The good news is that the vaccines are highly effective at preventing severe sickness. Clinical trials have found that both the Pfizer and BioNTech and Moderna vaccines are around 95 percent effective at preventing symptomatic COVID-19 infection after two doses. While our own data here in Qatar shows that within the over 60s age group, non-vaccinated people are 40 times more likely to be admitted to ICU than those who are fully vaccinated,” added Dr. Al Hamad.
“I urge all elderly members of our population not yet vaccinated to book their appointment. The vaccines provide maximum protection around 14 days after the second dose, so I encourage people not to delay starting their vaccination process and get protected as soon as they can,” said Dr. Al Hamad.
People over 60 years of age can receive their vaccines at one of the 27 Primary Health Care Corporation (PHCC) health centers. Anyone over 60 years of age who has not yet been vaccinated and requires an appointment can call PHCC on 4027 7077. Hamad Medical Corporation’s Home Healthcare Service is also vaccinating housebound patients in the comfort and safety of their homes. Patients registered with HMC’s Home Healthcare Service can call the Hamad Home Healthcare Call Center on 4439 0111 for help and advice on home healthcare needs as well as the COVID-19 vaccination.
RELATED: How to register online for COVID-19 vaccine in Qatar
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