WHO official recommends to Greeks to trust and get first COVID-19 vaccines

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WHO official recommends to Greeks to trust and get first COVID-19 vaccinesGreece's New Democracy government, which brought a second lockdown on Nov. 7, has struggled to persuade everyone to follow health protocols including wearing masks and staying a safe social distance

With surveys showing nearly one in three Greeks are skeptical about taking the first COVID-19 vaccine when it arrives in the country, the Regional Director of the World Health Organization, Hans Kluge, told them it's safe.

Speaking to Greece's state-run broadcaster ERT, Kluge said the vaccine would allow people to return to lives as normal with the pandemic now reaching into its ninth month and showing no signs of ending.

“Getting the vaccine will be a game-changer. It will be a deciding weapon against the pandemic and will help us gradually return to a normal social and economic life. The combination of getting vaccinated and following public health recommendations will offer the best protection for yourself and will help you protect others,” he said.

Greece's New Democracy government, which brought a second lockdown on Nov. 7, has struggled to persuade everyone to follow health protocols including wearing masks and staying a safe social distance from each other and there are some anti-mask groups.

Kluge applauded the government's handling of the pandemic although Prime Minister and New Democracy leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis admitted he waited too long to bring a second lockdown which let a second wave sweep the country.

The first vaccines were the result of unprecedented research and development and the first to approved in Europe, in the United Kingdom, will come from the US-based Pfizer which said tests showed up to 95 percent effectiveness although are harsh side effects and it must be transported in dry ice deep freezers.

“This year, we have all faced a new challenge, that has shaken our way of life. No community has been spared but many have been able to keep incidence very low in Greece. That’s because this is a challenge that can be overcome if we make the right choices,” he said.

“Part of the solution is vaccination. With 200 candidate Covid-19 vaccines under development, the promise is great. Here is Greece, you fully understand the returns on having high vaccination coverage,” he continued. 

“Your confidence and trust in the COVID-19 vaccine and the health services that provide them will be crucial. I urge you to seek reliable information from trustworthy sources. Don’t be part of a misinformation infodemic.”

He didn't say if he would take it as governments are trying to prioritize the first in line, with front line workers such as doctors, nurses, and health staff in the top tier along with the elderly and those with underlying or multiple conditions.

Kluge said all standard national regulatory processes are in place and WHO assesses all candidate COVID-19 vaccines as they complete the necessary clinical trials, while all information and data is thoroughly assessed and standards requirements for safety are met before a vaccine is licensed.

“Those vaccines that we vaccinate over 95% of our children with to protect against polio, measles, diphtheria are licensed in exactly the same way,” he said although the UK allowed the use only through an emergency declaration.

Kluge also said that the Greek government has already presented a plan to roll out vaccination against the Coronavirus.

“The country has made a great effort to make sure the limited vaccines are distributed in a fair, ethical, and transparent way. Now the plan needs to be put in action,” he also said.

Read more at thenationalherald.com

RELATED TOPICS: GreeceGreek tourism newsTourism in GreeceGreek islandsHotels in GreeceTravel to GreeceGreek destinationsGreek travel marketGreek tourism statisticsGreek tourism report

Photo Source: Wikimedia Commons License: CC-BY-SA Copyright: Zscout370 

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