More than 100,000 people vaccinated in Belgium: health authorities

2021-01-19 15:05:58 GMT2021-01-19 23:05:58(Beijing Time) Xinhua English

BRUSSELS, Jan. 19 (Xinhua) -- Belgium's Scientific Institute of Public Health Sciensano (Sciensano) reported Tuesday that 100,443 people have been vaccinated in the country by Jan. 17.

"This represents 35 percent of the target group of phase 1A, i.e. residents and caregivers in nursing homes, health care professionals in hospitals and front-line health workers," Dirk Ramaekers, head of the working group for the vaccination strategy, said Tuesday.

The next phase of the vaccination plan, namely phase 1B, will cover, as a priority, the vaccination of all citizens of 65 and over, and people with a chronic infection, said Ramaekers.

By Jan. 17, the National Reference Center of the KUL (Catholic University of Leuven) has detected 91 cases of the variant of the coronavirus found in Britain and seven cases of the variant detected in South Africa, said Yves Van Laethem, inter-federal spokesman for the fight against COVID-19 on Tuesday.

The epidemiological situation in Belgium showed a trend towards a slight decrease of all COVID-19 indicators. In the week of Jan. 9 to 15, an average of 2,018 new infections per day was reported on Tuesday by Sciensano.

From Jan. 12 to 18, an average of 115.9 hospitalizations per day was reported by Sciensano.

To date, Belgium has recorded a total of 679,771 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 20,472 deaths since the beginning of the epidemic.

As the world is struggling to contain the pandemic, vaccination is underway in some countries with the already-authorized coronavirus vaccines.

Meanwhile, 236 candidate vaccines are still being developed worldwide -- 63 of them in clinical trials -- in countries including Germany, China, Russia, Britain and the United States, according to information released by the World Health Organization on Jan. 12. Enditem