“Brussels is not delivering vaccine fast enough nor is it delivering enough vaccine to Hungary,” the Government Information Centre said in a statement sent to MTI on Sunday, responding to press conferences by left-wing parties.
As we wrote today, PM Orbán put pressure on the national health authority to approve the Chinese vaccine as soon as possible, saying that western vaccines get to the country very slowly. Details HERE.
Opposition LMP and Párbeszéd criticised the government’s procurement of Covid-19 vaccine on Sunday.
Opposition Párbeszéd believes using a Chinese Covid-19 vaccine for mass inoculation in Hungary is “a gamble” without subjecting it to a “thorough approval process”, the party’s European Union expert, Benedek Jávor, said at an online press conference on Sunday.
Jávor acknowledged that Hungary has the opportunity to issue emergency approval for the Chinese vaccine, but said that shouldn’t happen until all uncertainty is cleared up.
the Chinese vaccine uses “extremely old technology” and contains killed pathogens that come with “serious health risk”.
He demanded answers on why the vaccine maker’s executives had recently left the company, why the company doesn’t apply for approval for the vaccine in the European Union, and why test data on the vaccine have not been made public.
Opposition LMP is calling on Prime Minister Viktor Orban to “let the medicines authority do their work”, the party’s co-leader said at an online press conference on Sunday.
Máté Kanász-Nagy said
the prime minister had made several statements recently that “put serious pressure” on national medicines authorities to approve Covid-19 vaccines developed in Russia and China.
“LMP does not believe that kind of goading is appropriate; no form of political influence can be tolerated with regard to the approval of vaccines,” he said.
“If we only count on the Brussels procurement, then the restrictions and the curfew cannot be lifted,” the centre said.
“That’s why the government is working to get various vaccines from many sources, making them available to Hungarians as soon as possible,” it added.
The centre stressed that the Covid-19 vaccines are “not a political issue” and said “the Gyurcsány-led left wing would like for the epidemic to last as long as possible”.
The centre asked left-wing politicians to “help with the [epidemic] defence instead of riling people up”.
As we wrote on today, Experts of the National Institute of Pharmacy and Nutrition (OGYEI) have reviewed production of the Sinopharm Covid-19 vaccine in Beijing, read more HERE.
There are no changes planned to the Covid-19 vaccination rollout in Hungary, the chief medical officer said on public radio on Sunday.
Cecília Müller told Kossuth Radio that vaccine deliveries in the coming week would probably be smaller, for technical reasons, as Pfizer readies to ramp up production.
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said on Friday that hitches can be expected in European deliveries of Pfizer and BioNtech vaccines in the weeks ahead but the companies offered assurances they will make all contracted deliveries by the end of the first quarter.
Pfizer said temporary interruptions could be expected as a result of the expansion of a plant in Puurs, Belgium, but would result in a significant increase in production capacity.
Müller said preparations were underway to prevent any slowdown in the pace of the vaccination rollout, and efforts were being made to procure effective and safe vaccines from more sources. The government has contacted manufacturers outside of the European Union, she added.
A strict system has been established for inoculation points and everyone who received their first shot is sure to get their second jab which is necessary for full immunity, she said.
Müller expressed thanks to those who have registered for vaccination and said the information they submitted is necessary to contact them when the time comes.