The 150 rapid vaccination centers against covid-19 will start operating in early May, the coordinator of the task force for the vaccination program advanced in parliament today.
Asked by the deputies of the parliamentary health committee, Vice Admiral Henrique Gouveia e Melo started by stating that the 150 centers will be opened on April 11, but said that “what is at stake is having these centers operating from the beginning of May”.
Gouveia e Melo said that the ways in which the necessary health professionals will be hired for these units are being negotiated, in an estimated number of 2,500 nurses, 400 doctors and 2,300 assistants.
Gouveia Melo said that the professionals will be essentially from the National Health Service (SNS), but others will necessarily be hired.
“The idea is to use up to 20% of nurses who are in primary health care, as you know are 9,000 nurses, so 20% are 1,800 nurses and then add to these 1,800, the nurses that are needed and the human resources that are needed to quick vaccination posts, ”he said.
According to the official, in rapid vaccination posts, the efficiency of the process is four times higher than vaccination in normal health centers.
“With the same human resources, we managed to have a much higher efficiency in this process, in addition to convenience, in addition to physical security, because they are made in large airy spaces, which allows greater security and physical distance”, defended Gouveia e Melo.
Left-wing deputy Moisés Ferreira considered it to be “a little bit paradoxical”, at a time when the Portuguese Nurses Union says that there are almost 2,000 professionals in a precarious situation with the risk of being dismissed from the NHS, the task force coordinator ‘to say it is necessary to hire thousands of professionals, including nurses.
“Perhaps there is an obvious solution here, which is not to dismiss nurses who are in a precarious situation, but to give them a dignified and stable contract to also ensure this hiring”, defended the deputy blocker.
A pandemic covid-19 has already caused 16,845 deaths in Portugal, among the 821,104 confirmed cases of infection, according to the most recent bulletin from the Directorate-General for Health.