Ministry of Health: We expect all Norwegians will be offered the second dose in the second half of September

Saliba Andreas KorkuncPhoto: Lise Åserud / NTB

Vaccination delays can cause problems for the municipalities’ organization of the process but will probably not affect when Norway achieves herd immunity, the health authorities believe.

A number of municipalities have announced that they will soon stop prioritizing people who have not yet received the first dose in the vaccine queue. Instead, they will start administering dose two, and latecomers will end up at the back of the vaccination queue. 

In Norway, the National Institute of Public Health (FHI) estimates that there will only be a group of around 10% who have not been vaccinated for various reasons. 

On Wednesday, there were still several hundred thousand adult Norwegians who have not taken the first dose, chief physician Preben Aavitsland in the FHI noted.

Not very worried

“Some do not want to, some have not received an offer yet, some want to wait, some are on holiday. We will see how many remain at the end. We are not very worried about this,” Aavitsland told NTB.

“All vaccinations contribute to immunity in the population, but even more importantly to the protection of the vaccinated individuals. The support (for the vaccines) seems to be very high in all age groups, and we may end up with only around 10% of people who aren’t vaccinated,” Aavitsland said.

He stated that the municipalities had been told to complete the administration of dose one this week and next week, and then proceed to dose two. 

Dose two

In countries like the US and the UK, the authorities had to lure in people with things like free pizza to get them to take the first dose. There will probably not be a need for similar measures in Norway.

85% of the adult population has now received at least one vaccine dose.

“We expect that all adults will have been offered a second dose in the second half of September,” State Secretary Saliba Andreas Korkunc in the Ministry of Health and Care Services told NTB.

“Can be demanding”

Assistant director of health Espen Nakstad says that it is important that everyone takes the vaccine when they get the offer. 

“It is a demanding situation if we get more latecomers, but the FHI and the municipalities coordinate this well. With the number of doses that are on the way next month, it should be enough for everyone,” Nakstad told NTB.

“The problem is that latecomers demand a lot of reorganization for the municipalities. Therefore, we recommend everyone to take the vaccine when they get the offer,” he noted.

Source: © NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today / #NorwayTodayNews

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