Ivana Pavic Simetin: We’ll Vaccinate Entire School Grades if Needed

Lauren Simmonds

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As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, the Deputy Head of the Croatian Institute of Public Health, Ivana Pavic Simetin, was a recent guest of N1 Studio live. She discussed the vaccination of people in Zagreb who hadn’t been previously invited for the vaccine, and that other counties had already started carrying out the rollout in this way.

She stated that there are young doctors vaccinating people.

”We’re vaccinating our citizens who haven’t had the opportunity to be vaccinated so far, we’re vaccinating them without them needing to provide any prior notice, without being invited, they just need to come and bring their health cards so that we can enter all the data for the digital certificate. It’s going very well,” Ivana Pavic Simetin said.

“So far, the vast majority of people who have a great will and motivation have been vaccinated, either because of illness or because of travel. There are a large number of citizens, 30 or 40 percent of them, who have nothing against vaccination, they even have a positive attitude towards it, but they lack motivation. They think that it isn’t convenient today, so tomorrow or the day after tomorrow and a month or two will pass. To reach such groups, we must come to them.

A good example are the covid buses that travel through rural areas and vaccinate people,” she explained, also appealing to people waiting for autumn to be vaccinated, saying that then, if the fourth wave comes, it will be too late because they won’t be protected. As for vaccinating children, she says that it is currently recommended that children aged 12 and older be vaccinated if they themselves have a chronic illness or if they have someone in the household who is at risk.

“If someone has a desire for their child to be vaccinated, and they don’t fall into these two categories, they can exercise the right to that, but for now there is no organised vaccination of children. First, because they’ve broken up from school and it would be difficult to gather them together, and in children there are either no symptoms or they are very mild and there is much more experience in vaccinating adults in the world than there is in children.

By the beginning of the next academic year, we’ll prepare everything, study the literature and if there is something more organised to come, it will happen in autumn. If there are indicators that all children should be vaccinated, it will be carried out in schools, with whole classes, as it is typically done with every other vaccine,” she explained.

“It is not good for public figures to send out messages about not getting vaccinated.”

She also spoke about Croatian footballer Ivan Perisic, who according to the latest information didn’t get vaccinated, and is now positive for COVID-19.

”It isn’t good for anyone to send out messages about not being vaccinated, especially public figures. Djani Stipanicev contacted us because he’s a supporter of vaccination, and musicians also do the same see how many people will be able to come to their concerts with their digital confirmation documents. We already had several well-known names who have supported us in the vaccination process, for example Goran Ivanisevic was vaccinated in our country, Zvonimir Boban was also there.

We’re in constant contact with sports federations, we have special agreements with them, they need to be tested a lot because of all the competitions, so they know that they can contact us and we’ll arrange vaccinations for them the same day or the day after. All public health institutes have put vaccination in the first place. It isn’t difficult at all to get vaccinated,” she concluded.

For all you need to know about coronavirus specific to Croatia, make sure to bookmark our dedicated COVID-19 section and choose your preferred language.


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