The European Commission (EC) has laid out key steps in a strategy for effective COVID-19 vaccine deployment in Member States (MS).
“With our vaccination strategy, we are helping EU countries prepare their vaccination campaigns: who should be vaccinated first, how to have a fair distribution and how to protect the most vulnerable. If we want our vaccination to be successful, we need to prepare now.”
In a communication to the European Parliament and Council, the proposed strategy includes building capacity to deliver vaccines. MSs must ensure they have a skilled health care workforce backed by adequate supplies of medical and protective equipment to manage high volumes of vaccination.
They should also consider how different vaccines will need to be stored and transported, raising concerns of the resources required to achieve an end-to-end cold chain at such cold temperatures.
MSs should attempt to consolidate public trust in the safety of vaccination by expressing clear communications about the importance of vaccination for individual and public health, as well as the associated risks.
Targeted populations should have easy and affordable access to these vaccinations. The EC has provided a list of patient populations it feels should be considered for priority vaccinations:
- healthcare and long-term care facility workers
- persons over 60 years of age
- persons whose state of health makes them particularly at risk
- essential workers
- persons who cannot socially distance
- more disadvantaged socio-economic groups
The EC has re-emphasised the importance of unity throughout the pandemic.
Click here to view the full communication.