Statistics show that the inoculation rate for Covid-19 in Hungary was 14.3 percent, second only to Malta’s 17.49 percent, according to statistics complied by daily Magyar Nemzet. The only other EU member state with a ratio over 10 percent was Denmark at 10.23 percent.
Although Hungary and many other EU nations still have a long way to go in terms of inoculation, Hungary’s initial success is likely related to its decision to embrace Russian and Chinese vaccines after the EU’s vaccination rollout has widely seen as failing.
Cabinet Minister Gergely Gulyás stressed that it is important to obtain vaccines from wherever possible, and Hungary is among the best in Europe in terms of vaccination.
Despite early successes, it is not yet time to relax coronavirus restrictions, and the only defense is if vaccination continues, Gulyás told media after the weekly cabinet meeting at a press conference on Thursday, daily Magyar Hírlap reported.
Gulyás emphasized that experts say we are close to the peak of the third wave, and the numbers are extremely bad, but the healthcare system is expected to maintain free capacity.
He stressed that the most important thing is for everyone to follow the rules, do everything possible to reduce the number of contacts so that the current wave can quickly recede. If people are vaccinated quickly and many register, there will be no fourth wave, he said, adding that maybe the time until the restrictions are relaxed can be counted in “weeks or days”.
He explained that the peak of the third wave could be even harder than the second was in late December and early January. On Wednesday, 207 people died of the coronavirus, there are more than 6,500 new infections, more than 10,000 are in hospital, and 1,170 on ventilators, he said.
Gulyás thanked the doctors and nurses for the hard work. There are another 11,000 free hospital beds and 1,700 beds with ventilators, he said. He added that both residents and medics can take part in the defense, which means that the staff is larger than before, and there is no capacity problem.
Title image: Hungarian woman being inoculated with the AstraZeneca vaccine in Kunszállás, south-central Hungary on March 18, 2021. (MTI/Csaba Bús)