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“Corona vaccinations may start ahead of 5 January”

These are the words of Belgian premier Alexander De Croo (Flemish liberal).  The Belgian leader was speaking after European commission president Von der Leyen indicated that the EU authorities were expected to approve the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine before Christmas.  “If vaccines are available sooner, we are ready” says Mr De Croo.

The head of Belgium’s vaccination strategy Dirk Ramaekers told VRT News this morning that it’s expected a small number of vaccines will be available for Belgium if the EU authorities give the go-ahead before Christmas.  “These doses will be reserved for a limited number of care homes.  We won’t waste this opportunity.  In January we will be able to vaccinate on a larger scale.”

Vaccination will go ahead via hospitals that will supply care homes.  40 hospitals have been designated as hubs.  “Dry runs involving hospitals and care homes are already under way to ensure we are ready by January” says Ramaekers.

In January 300,000 doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine should be available.  First care home residents and health workers will receive the vaccine.

Starting March it’s the turn of seniors and people in risk groups.  “We cannot provide an exact timetable” says Ramaekers “because we don’t know when each vaccine will be available and in which quantities.”

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