Czech Health Minister Predicts Annual Vaccinations Against Covid-19

In an interview with Seznam Zpravy, Health Minister Vlastimil Válek discussed future plans for the Covid-19 vaccination, predicting that vaccination against Covid-19 may become an annual occurrence. 

On Tuesday, April 19, the Czech Republic passed the milestone of 40,000 deaths from Covid-19. The country has a population of 10.7 million and has suffered one of the world’s worst per capita death rates since the coronavirus pandemic began.

Despite decreasing infections, the upcoming summer is likely to be a lull before the next wave of the epidemic hits, according to Czech Health Minister Vlastimil Válek (TOP 09).

“Covid, like influenza, has an autumn curve and a smaller spring curve of infections. That’s why we will always need to vaccinate against covid before the autumn wave, so that the antibodies are high enough in the critical period,” Válek told Seznam Zprávy.

“Covid hasn’t gone away and we need to mentally prepare ourselves for the fact that we will probably have to get a vaccination shot every year,” he added.

According to the World Health Organization, it is still not conclusively known how long the vaccine provides protection against COVID-19, but they explain that “most people have strong protection against serious illness and death for at least 6 months.”

Latest statistics

A total of 594 people tested positive for Covid-19 on Sunday, the lowest number since October 10 last year. Hospitalisations have fallen below 1,000, according to data published by the Ministry of Health. 42 patients are currently in intensive care units.

However, the incidence number – the average number of cases detected over the past seven days per 100,000 people, has increased to an average of 131 infections.

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