COVID19: Cyprus edges toward herd immunity

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Cyprus is closing in on its end-of-August target of vaccinating 80% of its adult population with at least one shot of a COVID-19 vaccine to achieve herd immunity to coronavirus.

On Tuesday, the Health Ministry announced that 77.6% of the adult population had received at least one dose of a coronavirus vaccine, while 72.3% are fully jabbed.

Health experts argue that if Cyprus wants to contain the virus and its more potent variants, around 80-85% of the population needs to be vaccinated against COVID-19.

The ministry said that in addition to the vaccination rollout for the adults, jabs for teenagers and children under the age of 15 is coming along.

Some 34.4% of people aged 16 and 17 have received at least one dose, and 25.6% are fully vaccinated.

And 14% of children aged 12 to 15 have received their first jab.

Younger children were included in the vaccination rollout from 2 August and have yet to receive a second jab.

Apart from teenagers, the age group with the lowest vaccination coverage is between 20-29 with 59%.

The breakdown of the vaccination coverage by age group:

Paphos continues to lead on a district level as its vaccination coverage, with at least one dose, has reached 88.5%.

Picking up the pace, Famagusta comes in second with 85.5% getting a jab.

Nicosia and Limassol follow with 77.4% and 76%, respectively.

Larnaca has the lowest vaccination rate, with 71.6% of its population receiving a shot of a COVID-19 vaccine.

Walk-in vaccination centres, introduced in mid-July, have contributed to pushing up the island’s vaccination rate with 33,635 jabs carried out.