The Council of Ministers will approve the vaccination plan against the coronavirus at its meeting next Tuesday. This was announced this Friday by the Prime Minister, Pedro Sanchez, with the forecast that “a very substantial part” of the Spanish population will be vaccinated, “with all guarantees”, in the first half of 2021.
Sánchez made the announcement during the presentation of the Recovery, Transformation and Resilience Plan for the Spanish Economy, together with the President of the Government of La Rioja, Concha Andreu, at the Würth La Rioja Museum.
The Chief Executive also affirmed that Spain will become “the first country in the European Union together with Germany” to have a complete vaccination plan against Covid-19. “We have been working since September on this plan, which will be approved next Tuesday in the Council of Ministers. We are prepared. Our forecasts are that, in almost any scenario, a very substantial part of the population will be able to be vaccinated with all the guarantees throughout the first half of 2021 ”, he stressed.
The government leader has also indicated that there is a “hopeful horizon” due to the latest results of the vaccine, but has pointed out that “any euphoria must be compensated by caution.” Sánchez recalled that the European Union (EU) has already signed contracts with several pharmaceutical companies, such as Pfizer and AstraZeneca, and that negotiations with Moderna are “very advanced”. “We are working at full capacity so that vaccines are available as soon as possible,” he defended.
On the other hand, Sánchez has argued that Spain is on “the right track” to bend the curve, andto the fact that “two weeks of consecutive decline in incidence” have been chained, reaching 436 cases per 100,000 inhabitants in the last 14 days. “We are on the right path to bend the curve, fulfilling the objective we have set, although we still have a very high incidence,” he reflected.
This “ambitious” goal is, as he recalled, that the incidence is 25, as recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the European Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC, for its acronym in English).
«We are reducing the curve and contagions, but we cannot relax in these critical moments like Christmas, in which we are going to enjoy with our loved ones but where mobility is going to be increased. We are going to have to give a specific answer for these critical and important moments, which need a specific answer, “he concluded.
On the other hand, the Ministry of Health of Murcia It will allow the hospitality terraces to open 100% from this Saturday in Águilas, Ulea and Ojós because they are at a “medium” level of risk of transmission of Covid. Meanwhile, Abarán, Beniel, Cartagena, Lorquí, Molina de Segura, Pliego and Santomera will open the terraces with a maximum capacity of 75% when they find a “high” transmission level.
In the rest of the municipalities, the hotel industry will remain closed, as decided by the Ministry based on the incidence rates accumulated in the 45 municipalities of the Region last Monday, as reported by the Minister of Health, Manuel Villegas, and the spokesperson for the Covid Monitoring Committee in the Region, Jaime Pérez.
Pérez hopes that there will not be a call effect with the opening of municipalities, because the local police of all municipalities “will be vigilant.” The order of the openings will be published this Friday, although the protocol will not be published until next week, according to Pérez, who has indicated that the extension of the curfew and the confinements will be published on Monday, when its expiration expires.
He recalled that the protocol establishes the activity on terraces as a “medium” risk activity, so that it can be more flexible in its opening. However, he has warned that it is “fundamental” that “we all become aware that the use of a mask is essential also on the terraces, that we can only take them off to eat and drink.”
In this sense, Villegas has advanced that the Ministry of Tourism, Youth and Sports will promote a campaign with stickers, posters and in the media to raise awareness among the population about the mandatory use of the mask on terraces “all the time”, since “It can only be removed at the exact moment of ingestion of food or drink.” The objective, he adds, is for the risk of this activity to go from “medium” to “low”.
The situation will be analyzed again next Monday and it will be studied which municipalities are added to this list, according to Pérez, who has stated that the measures “could have been more flexible in some municipalities, but we are still at level 2 of care risk, with 534 hospital admissions, 109 of them in the ICU, which is worrying.