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Covid 19 Coronavirus: Minister Chris Hipkins reveals latest vaccination number

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Facts-Let’s take a closer look at the first four vaccines deployed in New Zealand. How they work, why they are needed, and who developed them.Video / NZ Herald

According to Chris Hipkins, more than 75% of New Zealanders over the age of 16 are likely or have already been vaccinated with the Covid vaccine.

“According to a April Ministry of Health survey, 77% of New Zealanders over the age of 16 are likely or already vaccinated, which is 69% in March. “Equivalent to,” said Minister Covid-19. ..

More than 500,000 vaccines have been given, according to Hypkins, ahead of expectations at this stage.

“As of last night, three months after the first person was vaccinated, 505,820 Covid-19 vaccines were given. This is an important milestone.”

Two doses of Pfizer vaccine are required every three weeks to protect against the virus. The virus has killed 3.4 million people (including 26 New Zealanders) since the pandemic began 18 months ago.

Meanwhile, according to a ministry survey on potential vaccine intake, the number of people who said they were unlikely to be vaccinated fell from 20% in March and 24% in December to 12%.

“It’s unlikely to be 12 percent, but a smaller group of people who oppose it remains, 7.8 percent.”

Health Director Ashley Bloomfield previously refused to reveal the number of New Zealanders who needed vaccination to reach herd immunity, but the proportion was previously estimated to be about 70 percent of the population. I did.

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71% of Maori surveyed said they would get a jab, up from 64% in March. Meanwhile, 79% of Pasifika respondents also increased from 59%.

People aged 65 and over (elderly people are at increased risk of serious viral illness and death) were most likely to be vaccinated.

The survey was conducted by Horizontal Research in collaboration with the University of Auckland’s Faculty of Population and Health through four different but related online surveys.

Five were held, the latest involving 1387 respondents between April 23 and May 2.

The result is “really encouraging,” Hypkins said.

“Major information campaigns, steady progress in vaccine deployment, and strong role models in each community make a real difference.

“Given that the rollout is underway for three months, it’s nice to see that the number of people who say they don’t get vaccinated is already steadily declining, including communities that are considered high-risk. “

COVID

It was important to understand why people were not ready to get the vaccine.

“According to this study, 15% are still uncertain whether they will have to pay for the vaccine, so they repeatedly say it’s free.

“People who identify themselves as disabled are likely to be uncertain on average whether they will be vaccinated, and there are still many who want to know more about the safety of the vaccine, so there is still something to do. there is.

“But we are pleased that the number of people concerned about the vaccine approval process has almost halved from 60% in December to 36%.”

“New Zealand’s Covid-19 vaccine drug approval system is one of the strictest in the world. This improvement is appropriate for people, while false and disinformation campaigns remain a government concern. Indicates that you have access to accurate information.

Last month’s Medsafe report on adverse events showed potential safety issues with the Pfizer vaccine, which was selected by the government to vaccinate New Zealanders over the age of 16 and approved by the Ministry of Health’s regulators. not.

This week, Hypkins announced a $ 1.4 billion vaccination fund over two years to ensure that the Covid-19 vaccine is free for everyone.

The first jabs were given to border workers, frontline medical staff, and the elderly and vulnerable South Auckland people.

Deployment will move to Group 3 (aged 65 and older and people with certain medical conditions) this month, but availability varies by health committee in some districts.

Population development will begin in July and will take the rest of the year.

According to Hypkins, 49 days to reach 100,000, 2 weeks to reach 200,000, 12 days to reach 300,000, 8 days to reach 400,000, 500,000. It took another eight days.

“Given the complexity and scale of the immediate challenges, this supports strong confidence in the vaccination program, as most of the vaccines are preparing to arrive in the country from July.

Chris Hipkins is the Covid-19 Minister for Correspondence.Photo / Mark Mitchell
Chris Hipkins is the Covid-19 Minister for Correspondence.Photo / Mark Mitchell

“We know that vaccine supply will be limited to the end of June, but our plans always assume large numbers of vaccines arriving in July, and more after group 3 vaccination. You can move on to people.

According to Hypkins, the “overwhelming majority” of the district health committee has started or planned to vaccinate Group 3 within a few weeks.

“We are on track to make the vaccine available to everyone in New Zealand by the end of 2021.”

Hypkins said the increase in confidence was very positive, especially between Maori and Pacifica, who had a very high hesitation about vaccines before, but were at greatest risk of serious effects from Covid-19. It was.

Above 70% was important as this was currently considered the minimum value to reach group immunity.

Hypkins said he acknowledged that the government and relevant authorities were “extremely careful” in deploying it to provide assurance that it was safe.

People were also face-to-face with local doctors and nurses about vaccine concerns. This has proven to be primarily effective.

“It gives us good confidence later in the year we stand up.”

He expected his confidence to grow as the deployment progressed.

Many who reported hesitation did so primarily because they were healthy and healthy and had little risk due to the closed borders.

As the world began to open further, Hypkins said these people would also want to be vaccinated.

Regarding herd immunity, Hypkins said modelers are still working on the exact rate at which vaccination is needed, as new variations complicate predictions.

They were also learning more about being able to vaccinate younger age groups. Vaccination from 12 to 15 years old is now possible.

According to Hypkins, false information remains a concern, with some spending “a considerable amount of time” distributing pamphlets designed to be “very reliable.”

“If there is no one else, people should trust their GP, their nurses to give them good factual information.”

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