Authorities are concerned about the growing reluctance of people who have refused to be vaccinated even though their turn has come.
While experts say the vaccination rate, seen as essential in the fight against the pandemic, is disappointing, an official said the rate of those who do not get vaccinated in Istanbul is also high.
“We open the vaccination appointments for 170,000 doses per day, but unfortunately 20,000 to 30,000 at most come to their appointments,” said Kemal Memi Moğlu, Istanbul’s provincial health director.
Noting that the vaccination rate of people over 65 is over 82%, Memişoğlu said that only 62% of people aged 55 to 64 have been vaccinated so far.
“We need to increase this rate and encourage people to vaccinate,” he added.
As of May 26, more than 2.72 million people had received their first doses, while more than 1.92 million had been fully vaccinated in Istanbul, a metropolis of more than 16 million people.
Speaking to the Milliyet daily, health experts suggested that the age limit should be lowered quickly in order to increase vaccination rates.
Tufan Tükek, the dean of Istanbul Medical Faculty Hospital, said these rates are not acceptable and why people don’t want to be vaccinated should be very well studied.
Turkey will become one of the first 10 countries in the world to develop a vaccine against the coronavirus, according to Turkish officials who met at a high-level meeting on May 25 on national vaccine research. The meeting was chaired by Vice President Fuat Oktay.
Measures on mass production of vaccines once a manufacturer receives emergency use authorization were discussed at the meeting attended by Minister of Health Fahrettin Koca, Minister of Industry and Mustafa Varank Technology and heads of institutions working on national vaccines.
Officials also discussed developments regarding an inactive vaccine developed by a team led by medical microbiologist Aykut Özdarendeli from Erciyes University in the central Anatolian province of Kayseri, as well as phase 2 testing and final preparations for the trials. phase 3.
Phase 3 studies which are due to start in the first week of June will be applied to a larger group of volunteers and the vaccine is expected to receive emergency use approval by October.