Turkey, Latest on coronavirus outbreak

Turkey: Over 462,000 health workers get COVID-19 shots

Nationwide vaccination campaign started on Thursday, 1.1M health workers to be vaccinated within a month

Ahmet Sertan Usul and Gozde Bayar   | 15.01.2021
Turkey: Over 462,000 health workers get COVID-19 shots

ANKARA

Over 462,000 health care staff in Turkey received the first doses of COVID-19 vaccine, the country’s Health Ministry said on Friday.

As of 12.30 p.m. local time, the live count showed that over 462,080 people have been vaccinated.

Devlet Bahceli, the head of the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), got the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine upon the call of the health minister.

“I hope that we will get rid of this pandemic very soon, and I invite all people to get vaccinated,” Bahceli said on Twitter.

On Thursday, Turkey started the mass COVID-vaccination campaign with health care staff. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan also got the first shot of the COVID-19 vaccine.

Health Minister Fahrettin Koca became the first person to receive Chinese vaccine jab in the country after Turkey’s official drug and medical equipment body Wednesday approved CoronaVac for emergency use against the novel coronavirus. Following the minister, members of the Coronavirus Scientific Advisory Board were vaccinated as well.

According to data from the Health Ministry, Turkey has 1.1 million health workers who will be vaccinated within a month.

Turkish health workers receive CoronaVac

ADIYAMAN, TURKEY - JANUARY 14: Adiyaman Training and Research Hospital's Province Health Director, Erdogan Oz receives CoronaVac vaccine against coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic after the vaccine was issued "Emergency Use Authorization" in Adiyaman, Turkey on January 14, 2021. ( Orhan Pehlül - Anadolu Agency )

Two doses of the vaccine will be administered 28 days apart. Those who recovered from COVID-19 will not be vaccinated in four to six months following their recovery.

The first batch of 3 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine developed by China’s SinoVac Biotech arrived in Turkey on Dec. 30.

Turkey has been implementing curfews on both weeknights and weekends since last month as part of efforts to curb the spread of the virus.

This week Erdogan announced that restrictions will be eased gradually as COVID-19 cases have been significantly decreasing recently.

Since December 2019, the COVID-19 pandemic has claimed almost 2 million lives in 191 countries and regions.

Over 93.15 million cases have been reported worldwide, with recoveries now over 51.42 million, according to figures compiled by the US’ Johns Hopkins University.

The US, India, and Brazil remain the worst-hit countries in terms of cases.

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