New vaccination plan: priority categories and new rules

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The Ministry of Health has announced the new vaccination plan, which presents some news: what are the priority categories and the new rules

The Ministry of Health presented the new vaccination plan to the Unified Conference of the Regions, with which it intends to accelerate the administration, which has so far been slow.

The premise made by the ministers of regional affairs, Maria Stella Gelmini, of health, Roberto Speranza, and for disabilities, Erika Stefani, who presented the program on Thursday with the head of civil protection, Fabrizio Curcio, and the emergency commissioner, Francesco Paolo Figliuolo, is that "Everyone respects his turn and ceases mischief".

In particular, the minister Gelmini stressed that vaccines must go to the "categories that really have the right" and that in this we must follow the exemplary behavior of the President of the Republic, Sergio Mattarella, who correctly waited his turn ".

But what does the new vaccination plan provide? The substantial difference with respect to the previous one concerns the identification of five new priority categories.

New vaccination plan, priority categories

“We have identified certain categories and age groups. We follow these criteria with clarity, transparency and respect for the rules ”, said Gelmini again.

Compared to the previous plan, therefore, 5 new categories have been identified into which the population is divided, based on age and the presence of pathological conditions. Priority will be given to category 1, and then to go down.

• Category 1. High fragility (extremely vulnerable people; severe disability);
• Category 2. Persons aged between 70 and 79;
• Category 3. Persons aged between 60 and 69 years;
• Category 4. Persons under the age of 60 with diseases or immunological compromise situations that can increase the risk of getting sick, but who are not in the condition of severity of extremely vulnerable people;
• Category 5. Rest of the population under the age of 60

In addition, regardless of age, teaching and non-teaching, school and university staff, the armed forces, police and public aid, prison services and residential communities are considered priorities in administering the vaccine.

The new rules on vaccines

The new plan therefore restarts from the point identified as fundamental by the previous plan: the vaccination of the elderly over 80 and people with high frailty. The vaccine will therefore continue to be administered to these categories of people and the aim is to complete the vaccination of health personnel, school staff, the military and law enforcement.

In parallel, however, taking into account the availability of vaccines, people belonging to the 5 new categories can be vaccinated, in descending order, starting with people over 70 years old.

The new plan also provides that, if the vaccine doses available allow it, it is possible to vaccinate within the workplace, regardless of age "unless the vaccination is carried out on site, by health professionals available there, at in order to achieve a significant gain in terms of timeliness, effectiveness and level of adhesion ".

What are the people who fall into the category of high fragility

The note issued by the Ministry of Health also specifies the guidelines for identifying people who fall into the highly frail category: "In defining the groups to be given priority in the vaccination campaign, consideration was also given to of reference, of the particular fragility of some categories of citizens suffering from specific pathologies evaluated as particularly critical as they are related to the lethality rate associated with COVID-19 due to pre-existing organ damage or impaired immune response capacity to SARS-CoV-2, defined as extremely vulnerable (…) and those with severe disabilities ”, reads the document released by the ministry.

These are defined in a table that groups the pathologies and disabilities assessed as serious and for which it is believed that the patient must be vaccinated in order to be protected from the hypothesis of contracting the virus (table here).

Vaccination plan, timing

Once the priority categories have been reached, the mass vaccination campaign should start at the end of the month. The goal is to continuously vaccinate in the hubs identified by the Regions and start administering 300,000 ampoules a day, a number that is almost double the current one.

From April to June, with the increase in the expected doses arriving, Italy should have the possibility of reaching at least 400,000 doses per day. To make things easier, Poste Italiane has made its free platform available for booking the vaccine in Lombardy, Sicily, Calabria, Marche, Abruzzo and Basilicata.

Read also

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  • Covid-19: how and who to vaccinate, expert advice
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Tag: Ministry of Health Vaccines

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