Several Qatari physicians and officials in the frontline of the fight against the pandemic are publicly taking the COVID-19 vaccine and encouraging others to take the shots. They emphasise that the vaccine is safe and that it will help win the battle against COVID-19 and go back to normal life.
Qatar has approved jabs developed by Pfizer-BioNTech and began administering vaccines on December 23.
Head of Vaccination at Ministry of Public Health, Dr. Soha Al Bayat said, “COVID-19 has made 2020 a difficult year for all of us. But now with the COVID-19 vaccine in Qatar, we have the chance to start gradually returning to our normal lives. To reach this point, the vaccine has undergone extensive testing to ensure it is safe and effective.
“I encourage everyone eligible for the vaccine to take it when it’s their turn,” she said in a video message posted by MoPH on its social media accounts.
Dr. Al Bayat recently received the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine shot and said she did not have any reactions.
Dr. Al Bayat has earlier said that they aim to vaccinate around 70 percent of the population is to reach herd immunity in which the population can be protected from the virus when a threshold of vaccination is reached.
Medical Director, Communicable Disease Center, Dr. Muna Al Maslamani has said that the vaccine is safe, effective and that the vaccines will help the world move forward.
“COVID-19 has influenced the lives of everyone in Qatar in one way or another. There are many lives we have lost and many people have been admitted to hospitals due to severe symptoms. Getting a vaccine against COVID-19 is our best chance of getting back to normal lives. I invite you and your loved ones to take the vaccine when the opportunity comes,” she said.
She also received the first shot of Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine against COVID19 and said: “I didn’t feel any tiredness or drowsiness. I didn’t even feel pain at the sight of the injection.”
With several global pharma giants developing the COVID-19 vaccines in record time, Dr. Al Maslamani said that Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine has undergone strict testing and proven safe and effective.
Several other senior healthcare officials too have got vaccinated against COVID-19 including Director of Public at MoPH, Sheikh Dr. Mohammed Al Thani; Co-chairperson of the National Pandemic Preparedness Committee and Director of Health Protection and Communicable Diseases at MoPH, Dr. Hamad Eid Al Romaihi; and Qatar’s National Health Strategy lead for Healthy Ageing and Medical Director of Rumailah Hospital, Dr. Hanadi Al Hamad.
Qatar started administering the vaccine from December 23 and in the first phase of vaccination until January 31, preference will be given to people over 70 years old, adults in chronic care and home care facilities, healthcare personnel most at risk of infection and people over 16 years of age with severe chronic diseases.