Vaccine registration to open for those over 16 in early June, says Czech Health Minister

Access to travel and cultural and sporting events should be enough motivation for young people to get vaccinated, according to Petr Arenberger.

ČTK

Written by ČTK
Published on 08.05.2021 09:55 (updated on 08.05.2021)

International travel and access to cultural and sporting events will serve as motivation for young people to get vaccinated against Covid-19, Czech Health Minister Petr Arenberger told journalists on Friday.

He said he did not fear young people would be less interested in vaccination than others.

Arenberger said he also expected children aged 12-16 to be vaccinated soon. All people over 16 may start registering as of early June, he added.

"We are launching age groups in one-week intervals not because of any shortage of vaccines, but because the system is overloaded," Arenberger stated.

During the night from Tuesday to Wednesday, when registration opens to more people, the online web is on the brink of its limit, he added.

People aged 45-49 will be able to register for vaccination from May 12.

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In the latest wave of registrations for people aged 50-55, 155,000 have signed up, Arenberger said.

Out of the approximately 686,000 Czech residents in this age group, about 108,000 have already been vaccinated as they were from a preferential group, such as health personnel, teachers, or those with a preexisting condition.

Since Monday, 10,000 young university lecturers have also registered, as the Health Ministry added them as a priority group.

On Thursday, 81,753 people were vaccinated against coronavirus, the highest number since the start of the vaccination campaign.

About 12 percent of Czechs over 16 have received at least one dose of the vaccine, and about one million have completed the vaccination process.

In comparison with other European countries, the Czech Republic had the fifth highest number of people that had completed vaccination by the end of April, but was below average according to the number of doses per capita. In May, the vaccination process has sped up significantly.

Prime Minister Andrej Babiš tweeted on Friday that over 412,000 people over 65 had not yet registered for vaccination. This is about one-fifth of the total 2.16 million people in this age range.

The state is considering offering antigen tests for free less frequently than once every three days. Given the lower incidence of Covid-19, however, this is not logical, Arenberger stated.

The epidemic continues to recede, as the number of new cases fell to 111 per 100,000 people over the past week.

Currently, Czech residents can take an antigen test covered by public health insurance once every three days.

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