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VACCINE

Covid-19 vaccine for people in their 30s in Spain: What you need to know

Some Spanish regions have already announced their vaccination plans for people aged 30 to 39. Here’s when under 40s are likely to get vaccinated in Spain, which Covid-19 vaccines they will receive and more. 

vaccine 30 to 39 spain
People aged 30 to 39 will be vaccinated in either June or July in Spain. Photo: Cristina Quicler/AFP

*JULY 5TH UPDATE: If you want to find out which regions are vaccinating people in the 30 to 39 age group from July 5th to July 11th, here is the latest update

As Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez announced back in May, Spain’s vaccine strategy will be  focused on inoculating its 50 to 59 age group in June. 

However, Spain’s 17 regions are managing their own inoculation campaigns and most have already begun vaccinating people in their 40s as well.

Although fewer than 20 percent of people aged 40 to 49 have been vaccinated, some of Spain’s autonomous communities have either started making vaccination appointments available to people in their thirties or started vaccinating them as well. 

As things stand on June 11th 2021, a quarter of Spain’s population (11.8 million) have been fully vaccinated and 43.4 percent (20.6 million) have received at least one dose. 

When are people aged 30 to 39 likely to get vaccinated in Spain?

The Canary Islands is the first region to start immunising people in their 30s, as in the least populated islands the vaccination of under 50s is far more advanced than the national average. On May 25th, health authorities in the Atlantic archipelago also opened up vaccination appointments to everyone over the age of 16. 

The autonomous cities of Ceuta and Melilla began vaccinating under 40s on June 10th.

Castilla-La Mancha is another region which has announced it intends to start vaccinating those in their 30s in June, as of June 21st to be precise. Extremadura is also expected to start vaccinating this age group in mid-June. 

Andalusian health authorities expect to start vaccinating under 40s ahead of schedule starting towards the end of next week, which runs from June 14th to June 20th. 

In Madrid, regional health councillor Enrique Ruiz Escudero expects people aged 30 to 39 in the capital to start their jabs in late June. 

However, in other regions such as Navarre, local authorities believe this age group will start being vaccinated in July.

In the Valencia region, president Ximo Puig has said that currently people in their 30s can expect to be inoculated in July, but given that the vaccination of those in their 40s started ten days earlier than forecast on June 7th, the July date could be brought forward for the 30 to 39 age group as well.

READ ALSO: 

Covid-19 vaccine for under 50s in Spain: What you need to know

In Catalonia, Public Health Secretary Carmen Cabezas said people in their 30s will be vaccinated “in the coming weeks” and that those aged 40 to 44 can book an appointment now for the vaccine.

Health authorities in Catalonia announced back in May that they intended to vaccinate their population between the ages of 16 and 39 all at the same time in July, making it the first region in Spain to provide a vaccination time frame for its younger adults.

The remaining regions are likely to start vaccinating people in their 30s in July, unless a fast rollout for under 50s allows for an earlier start date.

vaccination spain people 30 to 39(Photo by ANDER GILLENEA / AFP)

Which vaccines will people aged 30 to 39 get in Spain?

Spain’s Health Ministry is yet to publish an official update of its vaccination plan detailing which vaccines the regions should administer to people in their 30s, with the latest revision only addressing plans for those aged 40 to 49 (Group 10). 

However, as things stand the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines are the ones being used by the regions that have started vaccinating under 40s.

Pregnant and breastfeeding women in their 30s will also likely receive the mRNA, Pfizer or Moderna vaccines.

Many people in their 30s may be currently hoping that Spanish health authorities approve the use of the single-dose Johnson & Johnson inoculation for their age group, just as Spain’s Health Ministry did for 40 to 49-year olds on June 1st

Unfortunately, the latest reports point to the fact that Spain is receiving far fewer J&J vaccines than anticipated due to serious delivery delays (5.5 million doses expected this quarter, 1.2 million received so far).

As a result of these hold-ups, health workers have decided to give the first dose of Moderna and Pfizer vaccines to people in their 40s and 50s in order to not keep them waiting, meaning that only 700,000 J&J of the 1.2 million available have been used. 

This may influence Spain’s Public Health Commission and Health Ministry when it comes to announcing which vaccines will be made available to people in their 30s, although it’s hard to predict whether it will favour or hinder the inclusion of the one-dose Janssen vaccines in their updated strategy.

If you want to find out more about Spain’s Covid-19 vaccination campaign, vaccination certificates, getting an appointment and more, check our The Local Spain’s Covid-19 vaccine section here

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COVID-19

Spain rules out EU’s advice on compulsory Covid-19 vaccination 

Spain’s Health Ministry said Thursday there will be no mandatory vaccination in the country following the European Commission’s advice to Member States to “think about it” and Germany’s announcement that it will make vaccines compulsory in February.

Spain rules out EU's advice on compulsory Covid-19 vaccination 
A Spanish man being vaccinated poses with a custom-made T-shirt showing Spain's chief epidimiologist Fernando Simón striking a 'Dirty Harry/Clint Eastwood' pose over the words "What part of keep a two-metre distance don't you understand?' Photo: José Jordan

Spain’s Health Minister Carolina Darias on Thursday told journalists Covid-19 vaccines will continue to be voluntary in Spain given the “very high awareness of the population” with regard to the benefits of vaccination.

This follows the words of European Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen on Thursday, urging Member States to “think about mandatory vaccination” as more cases of the Omicron variant are detected across Europe. 

READ ALSO: Is Spain proving facts rather than force can convince the unvaccinated?

“I can understand that countries with low vaccine coverage are contemplating this and that Von der Leyen is considering opening up a debate, but in our country the situation is absolutely different,” Darias said at the press conference following her meeting with Spain’s Interterritorial Health Council.

According to the national health minister,  this was also “the general belief” of regional health leaders of each of Spain’s 17 autonomous communities she had just been in discussion with over Christmas Covid measures. 

READ MORE: Spain rules out new restrictions against Omicron variant

Almost 80 percent of Spain’s total population is fully vaccinated against Covid-19, a figure which is around 10 percent higher if looking at those who are eligible for the vaccine (over 12s). 

It has the highest vaccination rate among Europe’s most populous countries.

Germany announced tough new restrictions on Thursday in a bid to contain its fourth wave of Covid-19 aimed largely at the country’s unvaccinated people, with outgoing Chancellor Angela Merkel speaking in favour of compulsory vaccinations, which the German parliament is due to vote on soon.

Austria has also already said it will make Covid-19 vaccines compulsory next February, Belgium is also considering it and Greece on Tuesday said it will make vaccination obligatory for those over 60.

But for Spain, strict Covid-19 vaccination rules have never been on the table, having said from the start that getting the Covid-19 jabs was voluntary. 

There’s also a huge legal implication to imposing such a rule which Spanish courts are unlikely to look on favourably. 

Stricter Covid restrictions and the country’s two states of alarm, the first resulting in a full national lockdown from March to May 2020, have both been deemed unconstitutional by Spain’s Constitutional Court. 

READ ALSO: Could Spain lock down its unvaccinated or make Covid vaccines compulsory?

The Covid-19 health pass to access indoor public spaces was also until recently consistently rejected by regional high courts for breaching fundamental rights, although judges have changed their stance favouring this Covid certificate over old Covid-19 restrictions that affect the whole population.

MAP: Which regions in Spain now require a Covid health pass for daily affairs?

“In Spain what we have to do is to continue vaccinating as we have done until now” Darias added. 

“Spaniards understand that vaccines are not only a right, they are an obligation because we protect others with them”.

What Spanish health authorities are still considering is whether to vaccinate their 5 to 11 year olds after the go-ahead from the European Medicines Agency, with regions such as Madrid claiming they will start vaccinating their young children in December despite there being no official confirmation from Spain’s Vaccine Committee yet.

READ MORE: Will Spain soon vaccinate its children under 12?

Spain’s infection rate continues to rise day by day, jumping 17 points up to 234 cases per 100,000 people on Thursday. There are now also five confirmed cases of the Omicron variant in the country, one through community transmission.

Hospital bed occupancy with Covid patients has also risen slightly nationwide to 3.3 percent, as has ICU Covid occupancy which now stands at 8.4 percent, but the Spanish government insists these figures are “almost three times lower” than during previous waves of the coronavirus pandemic.

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