With the start of the Qatar’s COVID-19 vaccination campaign beginning on Wednesday 23 December, Dr. Samya Al Abdulla, Executive Director of Operations at Primary Health Care Corporation, confirmed that patients who are eligible to receive the vaccination will be contacted directly to arrange their appointments.
“The initial shipment of Pfizer and BioNTech vaccines arrived in Qatar on Monday 21 December and provides enough vaccines for those people most at risk. The Ministry of Public Health’s strategy will enable everyone in Qatar to be vaccinated against COVID-19 in 2021, but for now we must prioritize people most at risk from severe complications and death from the virus” explained Dr. Al Abdulla.
“Initially, vaccines will be prioritized for three key population groups: people over 70 years of age, people with multiple chronic conditions, and key healthcare workers with repeated exposure to COVID-19. Citizens and residents within these priority groups will be contacted by text messages and telephone calls from a PHCC health professional to arrange their vaccination appointment.” added Dr. Al Abdulla.
In the first phase of the vaccination campaign the Pfizer and BioNTech vaccines will be given to the priority population groups at seven PHCC health centers: Al Wajba, Leabaib, Al Ruwais, Um Slal, Rawdat Al Khail, Al Thumama and Muaither.
Dr. Al Abdulla explained that each of these health centers will have vaccination teams dedicated solely to administering the COVID-19 vaccine and that every effort has been made to ensure patients have a smooth and efficient experience when visiting the health centers. She added that the health centers and nursing teams are experienced in providing vaccinations as this is a regular part of their work. Administering and receiving the COVID-19 vaccine is very similar to the seasonal influenza vaccine, which is provided at all PHCC health centers each year.
“It is important to note that the Pfizer and BioNTech vaccine requires a second shot to be given 21 days after the first. Our appointment team will book patients in for their second vaccination visit and it is essential that people keep to this date and attend their appointment as planned, as any delay can impact the vaccine’s ability to offer protection. Full immunity develops around one week after the second dose of the vaccine.” added Dr. Al Abdulla.
For more information on the COVID-19 vaccine visit www.moph.gov.qa or call 16000.