The Public Health Commission, which brings together the Ministry of Health and the communities, began to study this Tuesday whether allows citizens who are on vacation to be vaccinated outside their place of residence, either within their community or outside their autonomy. This body agreed today to send next week a proposal for action on the vaccination of those people who temporarily move during their vacations to another territory, whether or not they have a displacement card.
The initiative of a coordinated action for these thousands of people who are going to be trapped in this situation has emerged from the presidents of Andalusia, Cantabria and Galicia, Juanma Moreno, Miguel Angel Revilla and Alberto Núñez Feijóo, and has support in other autonomies such as La Rioja or Navarra, which today supported this extraterritorial vaccination in the commission, or the Valencian Community (which has de facto inoculated second doses to tourists who stay more than a month in its territory). But this plan also has detractors among the ministries (particularly in the Basque Country or the Balearic Islands) and among experts from the Ministry of Health and the Vaccine Committee who see serious pitfalls.
The main problems –Explain those responsible for Health- are how to solve the logistics and planning of these inoculations outside the place of residence, because, a priori, the communities do not know how many vials they will need to immunize displaced people. And this, apart from the fact that the weekly deliveries of injectables to the communities by Health are “calculated to the millimeter”, depending on each target group to be immunized at each moment and the percentage of people in that group in each of the 19 territories. Calculations that are “very difficult” to perform with a “floating population.”
Any solution with the “current limited supply” of ampoules – explain those responsible for Public Health – would be “very complex” because it would have to go through the notice several weeks in advance of the interested party and a mechanism to “withdraw” injectables from a community to deliver them to another or from one center to get it to another.
Nevertheless, if the delivery of vials increased by the laboratories authorized by the EMA – they point from Health- this vaccination device out of place of residence would become somewhat simpler due to the capacity to accumulate in stock in the summer medical centers, although this would not solve the problem that in these holiday towns there is usually neither infrastructure nor sufficient personnel to attend to the medical needs of the displaced population, with which they could hardly face with its means and its staff (a good part of it in turn on vacation) a massive inoculation campaign.
In the Ministry of Health and in the communities the concern about this matter of vacations and vaccines grows day by day since there are more and more cases of people who refuse to inoculate the first dose because the second puncture would already catch them in their place from summer. And that – they explain from Public Health – that the projection of the second doses has not entered in July and August, moments in which more refusals to inoculate are expected.
This worrying situation because if it becomes generalized, it could delay the vaccination schedule provided by Health and that involves achieving herd immunity (70% of the population with the complete schedule) at some point in the second half of August.
Given this scenario and to avoid that this summer some vaccines may remain in the refrigerators due to lack of candidates from the target groups, in the next few weeks Health does not rule out parking the system of calling groups by age groups and opening vaccination to Anyone over the age of 16 who is willing to inoculate in the summer, as other countries such as Italy or Germany have already done.