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Greece Rolls Out Vaccine Campaign to Asylum Seekers, Refugees and Migrants

ATHENS — The vaccination of asylum seekers, refugees and migrants on the islands and the mainland began on Thursday. The vaccinations at the reception facilities at Kara Tepe on the island of Lesvos, VIAL on Chios and Vathy on Samos will continue on Friday.

Migration and Asylum Minister Notis Mitarachi and the president of the National Public Health Organisation Panagiotis Arkoumaneas will attend the vaccination process at VIAL structure on Chios.

The vaccinationns will be done by mobile NPHO units on Thursdays and Fridays and from next week, depending on the planning and availability of single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccines, vaccination of asylum seekers will begin on the islands of Kos, Leros and 10 reception facilities on the mainland.

Around 60,000 migrants and asylum-seekers currently live in camps, shelters, and government-subsidized apartments in Greece. About one-quarter are children and not currently eligible to receive vaccines.

COVID-19 has killed more than 12,000 people in the country of 10.7 people. Nearly one in five Greek residents have been fully vaccinated, according to government figures published Thursday. In a technical report published Wednesday, the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control urged European Union member nations to “ensure equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines and ensure equitable uptake” for migrants and the wider population.

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