Covid vaccine: Mass vaccination of Scotland's adults needs to be complete before autumn – Scotsman comment
It is also absolutely right that the first people to get the jab are the over-80s and NHS staff, given the greater risks of infection to both groups and the need for doctors and nurses to remain healthy so that they can look after the sick.
The Scottish government expects to vaccinate just under 560,000 people by the end of this month and all frontline health and social care workers, care home residents and staff and everyone aged 80 and other by the end of next month.
It might have been easier and quicker to just start vaccinating anyone who asked, but it is a more sensible strategy, and a more humane one, to take a targeted approach.
However, news that it could take until autumn for everyone in Scotland over the age of 18 to receive this potentially life-saving protection is more than a little disappointing.
The process is not entirely in the Scottish government’s hands, as it is receiving a population-based share of vaccines acquired by the UK.
But it needs to ensure the vaccination process is as efficient and quick as possible and that any potential roadblocks – such as whether there are enough people to give the injections and also sufficient back-up in case they become sick – are identified and dealt with as quickly as possible.
And, in this unprecedented crisis, no government – of Scotland, the UK or anywhere in the world – should simply be a passive customer of the drug companies. They need to be active partners.
Right now, there is no more pressing issue – partly because Covid is holding back progress on the others like climate change – so if there is a problem with the supply of any of the vaccines, this should be a problem for the leaders of every country in the world too.
The vaccines have given people hope but the idea that some will have to wait until autumn is likely to dampen public morale. Politicians needs to make sure every effort is made to speed up the process and bring this sad chapter in human history to an end.
A message from the Editor:
Thank you for reading this article. We're more reliant on your support than ever as the shift in consumer habits brought about by coronavirus impacts our advertisers.
If you haven't already, please consider supporting our trusted, fact-checked journalism by taking out a digital subscription.
Want to join the conversation? Please or to comment on this article.