Health workers in Turkey started on Thursday receiving the first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine.
Vaccines were administered in different provinces, including Ankara, Istanbul, Izmir, Erzurum, Kars, Tunceli, Sakarya, Afyonkarahisar, Eskisehir, Canakkale, Yalova, Kutahya, Bilecik and Trakya.
Health Minister Fahrettin Koca on Wednesday became the first person to receive the Chinese CoronaVac vaccine. Following the minister, the committee members of the Coronavirus Scientific Advisory Board were vaccinated as well.
According to data from the Health Ministry, there are about 1.1 million health workers in Turkey who will be vaccinated within a month.
Two doses of vaccines will be administered 28 days apart. Those who recovered from COVID-19 will not be vaccinated until four to six months.
Earlier on Wednesday, Turkey's official drug and medical equipment body approved CoronaVac for emergency use against the novel coronavirus.
The first batch of 3 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine ordered from China’s CoronaVac Biotech arrived in Turkey on Dec. 30.
4-stage vaccination plan
In the first stage along with health care staff, people over the age of 65, the elderly, disabled, adults living in crowded places, and those living at nursing homes will receive vaccine jabs.
In the second stage, essential workers and those with at least one chronic disease will be vaccinated.
In the third stage, citizens under the age of 50 with at least one chronic disease, young adults, those working in sectors and professions which are not included in the first two stages will be vaccinated.
In the fourth and last stage, all individuals other than the first three groups will be vaccinated.
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