Despite all this, on the eve of Ukraine still received the vaccine (though not the one that was originally expected). And now the first day of immunization is coming to an end, but for some reason, there is no feeling of "overcoming."
We understand the reasons and tell you why the start of the Covid-19 vaccination campaign in Ukraine is fundamentally different from the experience of other countries.
Vaccination in Ukraine
Health Minister Maksym Stepanov at today's morning briefing stated the start of vaccination in Ukraine, not missing the opportunity to note that the department has fully kept its promise – this process begins in February.
True, as we have already said, at first, Ukrainians will not be vaccinated with the drugs that were originally expected. So, instead of vaccines produced by Pfizer or AstraZeneca, the country received a drug around which there is a lot of controversies and which has already been dubbed the AstraZeneca option for poor countries in the media.
This is the CoviShield vaccine, which is produced by the Serum Institute of India under license from Oxford/AstraZeneca. We wrote here in more detail about it, including possible side effects.
There was not much noise around the arrival of 500 million doses of this drug in Ukraine. The first day of vaccination passed similarly "quietly." In particular, neither President Volodymyr Zelensky nor members of the government today focused on the start of immunization of Ukrainians.
If we take into account foreign experience, then in many countries, government officials are vaccinated first, thus setting an example for the population. Next, we will tell you who was the first to be vaccinated in Ukraine and how this process took place in other states.
The first injection from Covid-19 in Ukraine
It was received by Yevhen Horenko, a resuscitator of the Cherkasy regional hospital, who works in the "covid" department. Cherkasy governor Oleksandr Skichko reported this on his Facebook page, posting a photo with Yevhen.
Following Horenko, ten people were vaccinated against coronavirus in Cherkasy. In the Chernihiv region, which received 6,800 doses of the vaccine, ten doctors of the regional hospital were the first to be vaccinated.
According to head of the Chernihiv Regional State Administration Anna Kovalenko, this week they will vaccinate medical workers in Chernihiv, then mobile teams will leave for Pryluk and Nizhyn.
In Vinnytsia, the drug was administered to members of one of the regional mobile teams, and doctors in the capital, as it became known, will be vaccinated tomorrow. According to the press service of the Kyiv City State Administration, one of the first to receive the vaccine will be the head of the Alexander Clinical Hospital.
As for the authorities, for example, President Zelensky announced yesterday that he was ready to get vaccinated together with the military as the supreme commander in chief. Based on the words of chief sanitary doctor Viktor Lyashko, the vaccination of the military is provided for at the second stage.
At the same time, according to the vaccination schedule of Ukrainians, approved by the State Commission on Technogenic and Environmental Safety and Emergencies (TEB and ES), participants in the Joint Forces operation can receive an injection at the first stage. We wrote in more detail about all stages of vaccination here.
Now we turn to the experience of vaccination in other countries.
This country is the leader in the number of doses of anti-coronavirus vaccine administered per population. Mass immunization began here last December.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was the first in Israel to be vaccinated against coronavirus - the vaccination process was broadcast live. Together with him, Minister of Health Julius Edelstein received an injection from the American manufacturer Pfizer.
Netanyahu and Edelstein received the second dose of the vaccine three weeks later, in early January.
"Although I already have the experience, I am worried. I am sure that all Israeli citizens who are going to receive the second dose of the vaccine are as excited as I am," said the head of the Israeli government before the injection. The whole process was also broadcast live.
As of the end of January, about a third of the population – about 3 million people – had been vaccinated against Covid-19 in Israel. According to local authorities, about 1.7 million citizens of the country have already been vaccinated twice.
Mass vaccinations in the United States began on December 14th. New York City nurse Sandra Lindsey was the first to receive the vaccine and received a shot from Pfizer/BioNTech.
"I feel hope and relief... I hope this marks the beginning of the end of a very traumatic period for our country. I want to reassure the public that the vaccine is safe," said the nurse.
The United Kingdom is the first Western country to begin mass vaccination against coronavirus infection.
The UK also became the first country in the world to use the Pfizer vaccine after regulatory approval.
According to the BBC, the first person to be vaccinated as part of the vaccination program in the UK was 90-year-old Margaret Keenan.
"It is a great honor for me to be the first person (meaning in the country - ed.) Vaccinated against Covid-19," the woman said.
Among other citizens of the country, Queen Elizabeth II and her husband Prince Philip were also vaccinated against coronavirus. True, it is not known from which particular manufacturer - at the time of their vaccination, two drugs were already used in the country (the American company Pfizer and the British-Swedish AstraZeneca).
In Serbia, Prime Minister Ana Brnabic and Minister of Labor and Social Policy Daria Kisic-Tepavcevic, who is responsible for combating the spread of coronavirus in the country, were the first to receive injections.
"I want to personally demonstrate that the vaccine is safe," DPA International quotes Kisich-Tepavchevich.
At the moment, Serbia has overtaken all European countries, including France, Germany, and Spain, in terms of the percentage of the vaccinated population, and among the countries of the continent, it is second only to the UK.
Frankfurter Allgemeine writes that the reason for such a successful vaccination campaign in the country was the supply of drugs from many sources at once. Thus, along with Pfizer, Russian and Chinese pharmaceutical companies also supplied vaccines to Serbia, and thus Serbia was less dependent on quotas from one manufacturer.
Seychelles is also one of the leaders in terms of the number of vaccines received per capita. Mass immunization started here in early January, and the President of the Islands, Wavevel Ramkalavan, was the first to be vaccinated.
The website of the head of state notes that in this way he set an example to the population. Ramkalavan's vaccination was broadcast live.
After the President, his predecessor Danny Fore, First Lady Linda Ramakalawan, Vice President, ministers, and health officials also received the vaccine. The injection was given by the Chinese drug Sinopharm.
Here, as in the Seychelles, President Joko Widodo set an example for citizens. He was vaccinated with the CoronaVac vaccine produced by the Chinese biopharmaceutical company Sinovac Biotech.
By the way, it was also planned to vaccinate Ukrainians with this vaccine.