GPs in Germany will soon be able to ‘choose the Covid vaccine’ they offer patients

GPs in Germany will soon be able to 'choose the Covid vaccine' they offer patients
A doctor's practice in Brandenburg carrying out injections. Photo: DPA
Starting later this month, family doctors will be able to order the specific vaccines and amount of doses - rather than being allocated it from the government, German media reported on Friday.

GPs will be able to “order the specific Covid vaccine” they want to offer people, said the National Association of Statutory Health Insurance Physicians (KBV), according to the Rheinische Post.

“You state on the prescription which vaccine you need and how many doses,” the KBV reportedly said.

The federal government will provide family doctors with the choice of vaccines from BioNTech/Pfizer and AstraZeneca.

The order quantity per doctor is limited to 18 to 30 Pfizer doses and 10 to 50 AstraZeneca doses for the first week.

It is likely to come into force from April 26th.

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The North Rhine Pharmacists’ Association welcomed the move, saying it would help make sure fewer doses are wasted.

“This could also prevent the vaccine from being left in the practice’s refrigerators,” said the head of the association, Thomas Preis. “We will advise doctors to order both vaccines if possible,” he added.

At the moment doctors are allocated a vaccine by the government without choice.

Germany’s vaccine rollout is picking up pace since doctor’s practices starting carrying out jabs.

Health Minister Jens Spahn said on Thursday that 50,000 medical practices had announced a need for vaccines for the coming week. Last week there were 35,000 GPs giving out shots, and this week 45,000.

The country administered a record 758,173 injections on Wednesday.

In total, about 18.5 percent of the population has received at least one jab. 


What’s happening with the Johnson & Johnson vaccine?

The delivery of the single-dose Covid vaccine to the European Union was postponed this week due to the US investigating reports of rare blood clot cases after the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

The US urged its health authorities to pause the rollout. However, US health experts believe it will be used again soon.

Germany is waiting for 10 million doses of the vaccine.

COMPARE: The different strategies in Europe used to vaccinate against Covid-19

Berlin vaccination centre closes for two weeks

In other vaccine news, the Berlin vaccination centre at Tempelhof is closing for two weeks from April 21st, reported the Tagesspiegel.

The centre has been using the AstraZeneca to inoculate patients. But now that this vaccine is only for use in the over-60s age group, authorities believe it is no longer worth giving it out in the centre.

During the break the centre is to be refurbished so that BioNTech/Pfizer vaccines can be administered in future.

Due to the properties of the vaccine, special cooling systems are required. In the future, AstraZeneca will only be used by GPs, the federal government said.


To choose/select/pick out (something) – auswählen

Prescription – (das) Rezept 

Order quantity – (die) Bestellmenge 

Vaccination centre – (das) Impfzentrum 

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