Some 13 million people in Turkey still unvaccinated

Some 13 million people in Turkey still unvaccinated

Some 13 million people in Turkey still unvaccinated

Some 13 million people in Turkey have not yet got a single dose of a COVID-19 vaccine even though they are eligible for the jab, with a little more than 58 percent of the country’s whole population having been given at least two doses of the vaccine.

Moreover, despite repeated calls from government officials and experts, millions of people have also skipped their booster shot. Health Minister Fahrettin Koca recently put that figure for those who have been given two doses but need to get the third dose at 3 million.

Officials are particularly encouraging those who had already been given two shots of the jab, developed by the Chinese company Sinovac, to have the booster vaccine.

Turkey launched its inoculation drive in mid-January with the Sinovac jab and later added the Pfizer/BioNTech shot to its arsenal of vaccines.

To date, the country has administered more than 116 million doses of the COVID-19 shots. Close to 49 million people – or over 78 percent of the population aged 18 and above — have been double jabbed, while more than 55 million have received their first dose of the vaccine.

Moreover, 11 million people have been given the third dose of the vaccine.

“Some people think the vaccination is not producing any results. Even though the vaccination rate for the second dose of the jab exceeded 75 percent, the daily number of infections could surpass 30,000. But the vaccine has one significant result: We do not see sudden and sharp increases [in the cases] anymore. The pace of the pandemic is stable and more manageable,” Koca wrote on Twitter on Nov. 1.

Experts pointed that there has been some improvement in the pandemic situation particularly after Oct. 20, saying that the positivity rate -or the percentage of people testing positive for COVID-19- declined to 7.2 percent as of Oct. 28 from 8.55 percent on Oct. 19.

However, they added that new methods and rules are now needed to accelerate the vaccination drive.