A third of elderly given at least one shot of vaccine

COVID-19 vaccinations taking place on Kihnu Island on February 17.
COVID-19 vaccinations taking place on Kihnu Island on February 17. Source: Verner Vilgas/ERR

Around 30 percent of people over the age of 70 and 36 percent of people over 80 have received at least one shot of COVID-19 vaccine.

By Sunday morning, 166,163 people had been administered at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine, with 57,003 people immunized with both doses, the Ministry of Social Affairs communicated. Vaccinations total 223,166.

"Vaccination of people belonging to risk groups continued this week, alongside immunization of essential workers. Even though Estonia took delivery of fewer doses than anticipated this week, over 30,000 doses were administered. Vaccination coverage among people over 70 grew notably over the past week," Minister of Health and Labor Tanel Kiik said via a press release.

The minister added that vaccination of people who are most at risk from COVID-19 due to old age or preexisting medical conditions will remain the priority in the coming weeks.

Vaccinations for the week totaled 31,982 on Sunday morning of which 2,285 were administered on Saturday.

Family doctors will continue vaccinating people in risk groups next week, with immunization of education, social and strategic essential workers also underway. People over the age of 70 will be additionally vaccinated in Maardu, Loksa and Lasnamäe that have the highest COVID-19 case rates in Estonia between Saturday and Tuesday.

Data from the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) suggests that on average 10.3 percent of the adult population has received at least one dose, with Estonia's figure at 14.1 percent. This gives Estonia fourth place in terms of vaccination coverage in the EU.

At least one dose of vaccine has been administered to 36 percent of people 80 years of age or older. Five counties – Saare, Hiiu, Lääne, Rapla and Järva – have vaccinated over half of people over 80.

Vaccination coverage has grown somewhat in Ida-Viru County over the last week where every seventh 80+ person has been vaccinated. At least one dose has been administered to 29 percent of people over 70, up eight points since last week.

A total of 492 healthcare institutions have carried out vaccinations, including 403 family medicine centers. More than half of all vaccinations (53 percent) have been handled by family medicine centers. Hospitals are responsible for 33 percent of vaccinations, specialist care providers for 6 percent and nursing care providers 6 percent.

Estonia is set to take delivery of 19,890 doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, 10,800 doses of the Moderna vaccine and 4,800 doses of AstraZeneca vaccine. The national immunoprophylactic expert committee recommends using the AstraZeneca vaccine for immunizing people over 60 in the coming weeks.

Vaccination efforts are aimed at protecting risk groups who are more likely to contract COVID-19 or in whose case the disease might be severe, to prevent and reduce COVID-19 cases and deaths, lessen the load on the healthcare system and the economy and ensure normal functioning of society.


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Editor: Marcus Turovski

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