Vaccination expands to include all people in risk groups and over 65s

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Mass vacination. Source: Priit Mürk/ERR

From Wednesday, anyone belonging to a risk group, regardless of age, will be able to get vaccinated against coronavirus. Vaccinations will also start for the over 65s.

Until now, vaccination has been limited to the over 70s and those over 60 in risk groups but this will change from April 21, the Estonian Health Insurance Board (Haigekassa) said.

Maivi Parv, EHIF board member, said as approximately 70 percent of elderly people have been vaccinated, doctors can now start vaccinating younger age groups.

"However, in April we are still in a situation where the vaccine is arriving in the country in instalments and if your doctor does not have a time to offer you, they can add you to the waiting list. If the digital register does not have a time immediately, you should monitor local and national media and hospitals' social media channels which will report available vaccination times," Parv said.

The EHIF compiled lists of people eligible for the vaccine in January and these people will be able to book an appointment. You can see if you are being called for vaccination through the Patient Portal.

Appointments can be made via a family doctor or through the Patient Portal. Vaccination time slots will be added to the digital registry as vaccines are delivered to Estonia.

Family doctor Le Vallikivi also encouraged unvaccinated people over 70 to contact a family doctor. "We hope that those people who have previously refused vaccination and are now rethinking will also contact their family doctor center," she said.

A volunteer helpline has been opened to guide people who need help when making an appointment in the digital registry. The line is open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and the number to call is 6003 033.

More information about the vaccine process in Estonia can be read online at https://vaktsineeri.ee/en/covid-19/vaccination-in-estonia/

Registration will open for people aged 16-49 in May.

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Editor: Helen Wright

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