ATHENS — The first vaccines against the coronavirus have arrived in Greece.
The first 9,750 doses arrived overland, crossing from the Bulgarian border in the north Friday evening, with the van carrying them escorted by six police cars, a video taken at the border shows.
Vaccinations will begin at five Athens hospitals Sunday, with health personnel and elderly residents of nursing homes.
Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis and President of Republic Katerina Sakellaropoulou will be vaccinated on Sunday. A total of 42 government, military and police officials deemed essential to the functioning of the state, as well as opposition leaders, will also be vaccinated in the first days.
On Monday 28 December the vaccine will be distributed to COVID referral hospitals.
The second batch of 83,850 doses of the same vaccine is expected to arrive until December 30,2020.
According to the EU agreement the Pfizer vaccines doses that correspond to the Greek population are another 429,000 until the end of January and another until the end of February another 333.450 doses and until the end of March Greece will have received a total of 1,265,550 doses only from one of the companies (Pfizer-BioNTech).
Health authorities announced Friday 617 new infections over the past 24 hours, alongside 50 deaths.
The numbers are lower than recent trends, but authorities are still vigilant against a possible spread during the holiday season.
Five subway stations in central Athens were closed Friday afternoon to keep people from congregating in the capital’s festively decorated central squares and avenues. A nightly curfew at 10 p.m. is still in effect across the country.