A global and more complete strategy, including in particular the dates for starting the vaccination of people 65 years of age and over, patients at risk, essential functions and finally the general public, will be presented by the end of this week. Walloon Minister of Health Christie Morreale said during a debate on vaccination organized Wednesday in plenary session of the regional parliament.
In the meantime, pressed by the opposition deputies – cdH and PTB – who never stop denouncing the vagueness relating to future vaccination centers, the lack of transparency of the figures and more generally the persistent “slowness” of the campaign vaccination, the Minister took stock. “On January 22, we will have vaccinated, with the first doses, all residents of Walloon nursing homes and some of the staff, excluding clusters”, she asserted.
In parallel, vaccination of hospital staff will begin next Monday, “or a month and a half earlier than what had been announced”, thanks in particular to the guarantees provided by Pfizer with regard to the security of supply of tens of thousands of doses until the end of March in Belgium. “This second phase will begin in the 19 hospital hubs in Wallonia with Pfizer vaccines. A pilot experiment will also be carried out in a first non-hub hospital from Monday – that of Tivoli in La Louvière, for the Moderna vaccine”, continued the minister. According to the latter, two other Walloon hospitals – the Bois de l’Abbaye hospital in Seraing and the André Renard clinic in Herstal – will also use the MOderna vaccine from next week.
On January 25, the rest of the non-hub hospitals will start vaccination with Pfizer and Moderna, the only two vaccines currently authorized by the European Medicines Agency. In total, the vaccination of the hospital phase will concern around 82,000 workers and 38 hospitals at 100 sites in Wallonia. “The dose security, new deliveries and orders in progress will also allow us to start earlier vaccination of staff and residents of accommodation centers for people with disabilities (end of January) and support staff and primary care (general practitioners, nurses, nursing and family aides, physiotherapists, dentists …) (early February) “, added Christie Morreale.
These front-line caregivers will inaugurate the first centers and branches that will be deployed for the vaccination of the general public. In this context, the two testing villages in Wallonia – Bierset (Liège Airport) and Ronquières – will be mobilized as vaccination centers. “Thanks to their 5 respective vaccination lines that can go up to 10 depending on needs, and their extended opening hours to 10 hours a day, they will be able to vaccinate up to 1,500 help and care professionals daily and, thereafter, the general public “, detailed the minister. “Other major centers, local branches and mobile branches will be deployed throughout the territory to offer each Walloon a proximity formula. The selection of these places is being finalized”, she finally assured.