1+1 vaccination starts at Narva Hospital

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Narva Hospital. Source: Sergei Stepanov/ERR

About a dozen pairs of people received coronavirus vaccines Saturday morning at Narva Hospital, in northeastern Estonia, following the so-called '1+1' model, ETV news show "Aktuaalne kaamera" (AK) reported.

While numbers might have been seen as disappointing, those that were involved gave positive feedback to AK.

"I like this system. I hope that it will increase the demand and interest in vaccination among the residents of Ida-Viru County," nurse Natalja Metelitsa said.

The term refers to the system where an elderly (70 or over) person presenting for a coronavirus is accompanied by a younger person, who in so doing also receives a shot.

The scheme is aimed at boosting vaccine coverage in Estonia's easternmost county, which still lags behind the rest of the country.

"I would even introduce a 1 + 2 system - one 70+ person plus two additional relatives - so that the interest would grow even more," Sister Metelitsa added.

The other issue in the region is a shortage of vaccines. The 1+1 scheme began in Narva-Jõesuu, a resort town near Narva itself, where it contiinued Saturday.

One vaccinee, Vladisav, 32, told AK he had come to get his shot with his elderly grandmother, adding neither of them needed much persuading.

"My uncle – her son – had just recovered from coronavirus ... He told me about the horrors in the hospital, and then I needed no convincing. I just upped and brought my grandmother here. There was no more time needed to convince me," Vladislav said.

All time slots were booked up for Saturday, which was a national holiday, but 1+1 pairs are accepted off-list, and there were enough doses in stock for those who came also, AK reported.

"This is the major, and only, opportunity for my generation to get vaccinated. Who knows when the 30+ age group will get vaccinated. I think it will come only next year. But I would like to get it as soon as possible, I would even agree to getting the AstraZeneca jab," Vladislav went on.

A larger number of over 50s are to be vaccinated at Narva Hospital next Wednesday.

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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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