The immunisation of the over 70s - the next 'target group' in Spain's vaccination strategy against Covid-19 - will begin in March if Pfizer's supply problems are ironed out.
The choice of the age of 70 to begin this second stage of the vaccination programme is not accidental. Half of those over this age who contract Covid end up needing hospital admission and many of them also end up in the ICU.
It is estimated that there are 6.6 million people over the age of 70 who live in the community.
According to draft proposals the vaccination of seriously ill patients of other age groups and essential workers would come after this group.
The objective of the campaign remains the same as when the vaccination plan working group was created in autumn: to ensure that between May and June there are between 20 and 30 million people vaccinated and that at the beginning of September the country will reach ‘herd immunity’ with 70 per cent of the population vaccinated.
Spain’s Ministry of Health has said that the country received 41 per cent fewer doses of the Pfizer vaccine this week than the three previous consignments, which began shipping in late December.
Instead of the 350,000 planned, the pharmaceutical company sent 205,727.
However, the department headed by Health Minister Salvador Illa believes that by the end of the March it will have received the same number of doses originally scheduled.