News story | Date: 27/05/2021
New projections from the Norwegian Institute of Public Health show that the planned redistribution of vaccine doses, resulting in a 60% increase for certain municipalities, would mean that municipalities with a low rate of infection would have to relinquish much more than 35% of their doses. In order to avoid municipalities having to relinquish more doses than planned, the redistribution has been downscaled to a 45% increase for the municipalities that are to receive extra doses.
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Last week, the Norwegian Government decided on a more targeted distribution of vaccine doses to municipalities that have had a high rate of infection and strict measures over a long period of time. Twenty-four municipalities were set to receive 60% more vaccine doses.
At the same time, it was important for the Norwegian Government to ensure that the municipalities would be able to handle the consequences of the redistribution. The municipalities responded that it would be challenging, but the majority said that they would manage.
‘The Norwegian Government has concluded that no municipality will relinquish more than 35% of their vaccine doses. This means that the municipalities receiving doses will receive 45% more.
The Norwegian Institute of Public Health affirms that the redistribution will still be effective and that there will be no significant changes to the summer’s vaccination schedule’, says Minister of Health and Care Services Bent Høie.
The reason for the change is, among others, that some municipalities have been removed from the list of municipalities that must relinquish doses. In addition, the Norwegian Institute of Public Health has looked at practical considerations regarding the distribution of vaccines. Such considerations were not included in the previous assessments.
‘Keeping the limit at approximately 35% reduces the risk of delays in the municipalities. The number of vaccine doses delivered to Norway will increase greatly in the coming weeks. The redistribution will not cause vaccination to stop in the municipalities, but it will gather pace in the 24 municipalities that are receiving extra doses’, stresses Mr Høie.
If vaccine deliveries go ahead as planned, everyone over the age of 18 in the 24 municipalities will have been offered vaccination by the end of July, according to the projections of the Norwegian Institute of Public Health.
‘The most recent information indicates that approximately 300 000 vaccine doses will be delivered in week 23 (7–13 June), and not 340 000 as expected previously. We hope that these doses will arrive soon so that we manage to follow the vaccination schedule’, concludes Mr Høie.