Pedro Sánchez’s cabinet will today be presented with the plan for coronavirus vaccination. In announcing on Sunday that this would be the case, the prime minister rather grandly stated that there will be 13,000 vaccination points that will guarantee “equitable access to vaccines” through the primary health care system. The 13,000 figure was a headline.
It was thought Spain is to create a network with the vaccine in mind. No such network will be created, as there already is one. In 2019, national ministry of health statistics showed that there are 13,133 primary centres of one type or another. The coronavirus vaccination programme will therefore be akin to that for the flu. Nevertheless, the prime minister felt it necessary to imply that there is to be a special effort. It will be special because this is coronavirus and not flu, but logistically it won’t be, while the period for vaccination is unlikely to be compressed into a couple of months, which is the case with flu.
The number that Sánchez can’t offer, although there will probably be an estimate, is for how many people will be vaccinated. He noted that 14 million flu jabs have been given so far this year - that’s thirty per cent of the population, with the jab intended for certain priority groups. The government has stated that people can’t be forced to have the vaccine, and so the number that may prove to be more important is how many don’t have it. That’s the plan, then?