At what point are we with the vaccination campaign? «I would say well on track. We have gained two weeks compared to the first roadmap provided by the Canton in February».

The critical points and the difficulties, nevertheless, are not lacking. Beginning with delays in supplies, the real sore point of a complex organization effort that is moving forward and not without obstacles. However, looking further ahead, the cantonal pharmacist can confirm the timetable: the phase reserved for the over-65s - officially started on Tuesday, April 6 - will end as planned by the end of May. « Everything is on schedule»

The delays

Well, then, let’s delve into the details of what’s been happening in recent weeks. We begin with good news. Approximately 25,000 doses arrived in Ticino yesterday: 17,000 from Moderna and just 8,000 from Pfizer. «A great quantity, especially for Pfizer, whose supplies on average are around 2 - 4 thousand doses at most». But what about the delay on the latest deliveries? « Pfizer requested the Swiss government if they could not deliver the doses on Easter Monday. Therefore, they arrived in Switzerland on Tuesday.

Easter closures

The closure of vaccination centers during the Easter period was another issue. At federal level, the subject, in recent days, has raised a number of criticisms and questions about the appropriateness of the choice taken by several cantons, including Canton Ticino. Why slow down a voluntary process of vaccination that is already running at a standstill?

«In Ticino, we were vaccinating until late Saturday night, by which time we had run out of available doses. The center was closed on Sunday, in fact. But I will say more: to carry on with the schedule until Saturday evening, we had to take the vaccine from the doses set aside.

Those - to make it clear - that you need for full vaccine protection. There is a calculated risk element that is a part of our policy. If we are going to move with a certain speed, we have to take the risk of using up some of the stockpile provided for the second dose.

Not surprisingly, at the moment, Ticino is among the cantons that have vaccinated the greatest number of people. To be precise, 7.1% of the population, for a total of 71,541 doses administered.

Excellent turnout

But what about the over-65s’ participation in the vaccination program? « It is very high,« Zanini says with satisfaction. « We currently have about 27-28 thousand registrations out of a total of 35 thousand people. About 80%.» The conclusion is simple: the supply of 25,000 vaccines that arrived yesterday, alone, will not be enough to cover the outstanding requirements.

However, for those, there is good news: from next week, if everything proceeds as planned, we can add another 11,500 appointments». In fact, next Monday Pfizer should provide 6,825 vaccines in Ticino. Within two weeks 7,800. The week after that, another 5,800. « These supplies from Pfizer are all confirmed, in contrast to those of Moderna, for which we do not have the same level of supply. In contrast to those of Moderna, for which we do not have the same guarantees». Thus, precisely, the caution in scheduling appointments.

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