“I am 65 years old and I was scheduled to be vaccinated with the second dose of AstraZeneca on June 29th. They have canceled my appointment without giving me more explanations and no matter how much I call the health center and the 900 health phone, nobody clarifies what is happening. I have even gone to City Hall to speak with the Councilor for Health and she doesn’t know what to say to me either. ” The words of Monsterrat Tallada, resident of Rojales, summarize the feelings of a good part of the people who in the coming weeks had to go to receive the second dose of the vaccine and who on Tuesday afternoon Health canceled the appointment without providing them with a new date.
Is about people between 60 and 65 years old that they carry waiting to complete your vaccination since the beginning of April and now they are lost and are looking for someone to clarify something for them. In health centers they are receiving a multitude of calls and there are even people who go to hospitals, as happened this Wednesday in Sant Joan, and queue to see if the person at the entrance desk clarifies something for them. Without success, of course. From Health, to questions from this newspaper, they do not specify when they will be called again. Health sources ensure that everything related to the second dose of AstraZeneca It is managed from Valencia with secrecy.
But chaos with people between the ages of 60 and 65 isn’t the only thing that AstraZeneca has as a backdrop. This Wednesday teachers under 60 they have started to receiver SMS telling them that they are going to be vaccinated with Pfizer. In case they prefer AstraZeneca, they are provided with a link to accept a informed consent. This Wednesday it was impossible to choose the Anglo-Swedish vaccine as the second dose. Teachers who clicked on the link came across messages such as: “Right now it is not possible to select the vaccine. You will receive a new SMS or try again later ». Public Health has explained to union representatives of the teachers that the sending of these messages was not planned until Monday, but that it was foreseeable that this Thursday the system would function normally. The teachers who are receiving the messages have until Sunday to choose a vaccine. If they cannot get the Health link to work, they understand that they are opting for Pfizer.
Teachers will receive the second dose of the covid vaccine between June 21 and July 12. This has been made known from the Ministry of Education after having agreed with Health and informed the union representatives. The regional secretary, Miquel Soler, has transferred the vaccination dates to both the educational unions and the associations of directors and directors of public centers and the employers’ associations of concerted education.
From the union STEPV They explained that, according to the instructions given to them by Education, “one brand of vaccine will not be prioritized over another, depending on the doses that each vaccination center of each brand has, some people or others will be summoned.”
And it is that this new mess with AstraZeneca again sows doubts about whether there will be enough doses to finish vaccinating everyone who received the first injection, especially considering that the European Union announced that the contract with this laboratory was ending in June, which on the other hand has never been very compliant with deliveries. The Ministry of Health refused this Wednesday to provide data on the number of vaccines they have in reserve, limiting themselves to pointing out that the second doses “are guaranteed.”
According to the calculations of this newspaper, from the last data provided by Health a few weeks ago, and depending on the doses that have arrived since then and how many have been used, the Valencian Community would currently have a stock of just over 410,000 AstraZeneca doses. About 110,000 under 60 years old qThey remain to be vaccinated with this serum. Regarding people between 60 and 65 years old, who began to be immunized on April 6, there would be about 350,000. Therefore, about 460,000 doses would be needed. So at the moment the reserve is insufficient and it would be at the expense of the pharmaceutical company complying with and sending all the committed doses.
Responsible for different hospitals in the province of Alicante consulted by this newspaper lament the obscurantism and the uncertainty with which the arrival of doses is being planned and the impossibility of making plans beyond a week.
Lack of transparency of the Ministry
Health refuses to provide data on the AstraZeneca doses it has in stock
Lack of information and versions that later do not correspond to reality. The communication of the Ministry of Health regarding what is happening with AstraZeneca come back to obscurantism that already marked the beginning of the pandemic. An example of the lack of information is the one that surrounds the number of doses that are currently stored and if these are enough to guarantee all the second doses. This newspaper has tried to know this information, which was nevertheless categorically denied by the spokesman for the Ministry of Health, who limited himself to pointing out that the figure provided two weeks ago was taken as a reference, adding that “today there are many more saved” . There is also no transparency around what has happened with the cancellation of appointments. On Tuesday from Health it was indicated that these appointments were canceled to reconvene the interested parties with 12 weeks between doses and not with 10 as in the beginning they had been summoned. Also that they had been summoned at points, such as the field hospital, that are no longer operational. However, this newspaper contacted many people on Wednesday who already had the appointment for the second dose with 12 weeks to spare and also with people who were going to receive the second puncture in the same location as the first and, nevertheless, all of them were annulled.
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.