Flu and Covid vaccination campaign begins on September 29

Health executive predicts ‘forceful campaign with enormous adhesion’

Portugal’s autumn vaccination campaign against flu and Covid-19 will be starting on September 29.

Talking at yesterday’s WHO Symposium in Porto, Fernando Araújo, executive director of the SNS health service, said “the scenario we have on the table is starting on September 29 with force and an enormous adhesion by the Portuguese people”.

Mr Araújo admitted that the roll-out will be complex, by dint of the fact that these vaccines will be available at 2,000 entities run by the Ministry of Health – but the bottom line was that there will be no shortage of these vaccines. No one should fear that, stressed Araújo and the country’s health minister.

The novelty with this year’s campaign is that vaccinations will also be offered by 3,000 community pharmacies, offering wider timetables for people whose work schedules, for example, do not fit with the times offered by health centres.

These vaccines are adapted, in terms of both the strains of flu and the predominant variant of Covid-19.

Nothing has been explained as to whether, in the case of the Covid vaccines, these are now able to curb transmission and/ or stop people actually contracting the virus. But it is clear that both shots  will be recommended for people over the age of 60, as well as to other priority groups (further orientation to follow).