Nurse’s Order blames National Health Service’s administration for ER chaos and reduced vaccination rate

Written By Manuel Poças

The Portuguese Nurse’s Order has blamed the Executive Direction of the National Health Service for the increase in mortality and the chaos in hospitalizations and emergency services.

According to the official statements, the Nurse’s Order criticizes the executive decision that allowed flu and COVID-19 vaccinations to take place in pharmacies. The Order opposed the decision from day one, arguing it would be ineffective.

The truth is that this new strategy, which cost the taxpayer 12 million euros, coincides with a 21% increase in the flu death rate when compared to last year’s homologous period. Moreover, 96% of the flu cases admitted to the emergency cases are of the influenza A virus, and most patients are not vaccinated.

The strategy led to a significant decrease in the vaccination rate, which resulted in a surge in mortality, and chaos in hospitalization and emergency rooms. Furthermore, the immunization rate is now the worst in the last 5 years.

An efficient vaccination strategy is the most effective mechanism to prevent illness. Thus, in light of the data on the new strategy, the Order emphasizes that the vaccination process should be centralized once again. Citizens should be vaccinated by nurses, within hospitals and/or public health centers.

The order believes that instead of channeling money to private companies that are not capable of guaranteeing the necessary conditions to administer vaccines and follow an effective vaccination strategy properly, the Portuguese Government should invest in reinforcing primary public health care.

The free vaccinations were only provided to those 60 and above, as well as other vulnerable groups such as pregnant women and health care workers.

However, this week, the free vaccination program has now been extended to other groups. People over 50 years old are eligible for the free flu vaccine and those above 18 are eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine. 

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