- 2 Mar 2021 9:08 AM
- Hungary Matters
“The situation is serious and we must devote all of our efforts to bringing this epidemic under control.” Citing worsening transmission statistics, Müller advised Hungarians to observe epidemic rules and accept whichever jab is offered to them.
“Those who cherry-pick according to their personal preference may lose weeks in getting protected against the virus, they should in the current epidemic situation think twice about whether or not to wait that long,” she said, adding that traces of the virus are on the rise in the waste water of cities, including in Budapest, Békéscsaba, Pécs, Kecskemét and Szekszárd, indicating that a further deterioration can be expected in the epidemic situation.
At the same press conference, a deputy leader of Hungary’s operative board responsible for handling the coronavirus epidemic noted the government decision under which coronavirus-related border control and protection measures have been extended until midnight on March 15 at Hungary’s EU Schengen borders.
The measure serves to protect the life and health of Hungarian citizens in light of the third wave of the coronavirus in the country, Lieutenant Colonel Róbert Kiss said.
Hungary Changes Vaccine Schedule
Under a revised national vaccination protocol, the phasing of the administering of the Pfizer and the AstraZeneca vaccines has been modified to ensure that as many people as possible get a first jab.
Under the revised protocol, those who have been called to take up their first Pfizer jab are slated to receive their second shot not 21 but 35 days later, the chief medical officer, Cecília Müller, said.
Recipients of AstraZeneca will be called back for their second jab on the 12th consecutive week, the maximum timeframe period allowed under the manufacturer’s protocol.
Those who have already received their first jab are required to return for their second shot on the day indicated on their vaccination card, Müller said.
Hungary has expanded the number of Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines it is contracted to purchase to 10,870,000 doses from 6.5 million, she told an online briefing.
Also, a large shipment of Russia’s Sputnik V containing 100,000 doses of the vaccine’s first component and 180,000 doses of the second one is on its way to Budapest.
She said 685,247 people have been vaccinated so far, with 251,691 having received a second shot.
“These data show that Hungary’s inoculation rate is the third highest in Europe.”
MTI Photo: Zoltán Balogh