Her Excellency Minister of Public Health Dr. Hanan Mohammed Al Kuwari called on elders and all those eligible at this time not to delay starting their COVID-19 vaccination process.
"I encourage our elders and all those eligible at this time not to delay starting their vaccination process. The sooner you start, the sooner you will be protected," H.E. the Minister of Public Health said.
The Ministry of Public Health has announced that 61% of people over 70 years of age have received at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose since the start of Qatar's National COVID-19 Vaccination Program.
Dr. Hanadi Al Hamad, National Health Strategy 2018-2022 Lead for Healthy Ageing, explained that older people are at increased risk from COVID-19. "It is incredibly pleasing to know that six out of ten people over 70 years of age have received at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose. Every day, more and more older people in Qatar are receiving their second vaccine dose and building their protection against COVID-19."
The protective effects of one vaccine dose have been supported by a recent study in the United Kingdom which found the Pfizer and BioNTech vaccine to be very effective at preventing hospitalizations and ICU admission due to COVID-19 in people over 80 years of age after one dose.
"People of all ages and health conditions can become infected with COVID-19, but since the start of the pandemic it has been clear that older people are 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," said Dr. Al Hamad.
"In addition to elderly patients being vaccinated at health centers, more than 90% of elderly Hamad Medical Corporation inpatients have received their first vaccine dose and every day, our Home Health Care Service teams are visiting elderly housebound patients in the comfort and safety of their homes to administer vaccines," explained Dr. Al Hamad.
"More than 200 million vaccine doses have now been given to people across the world and the vaccine has displayed very high levels of safety and efficacy. People should not be worried about having the vaccine, they should only be worried about getting the virus," added Dr. Al Hamad.
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