Now the time has finally come: in addition to vaccinations in the 28 Hessian vaccination centers, which are still unable to reach their full potential, COVID-19 vaccinations by general practitioners in Hesse start today - albeit on a low flame for now. Nevertheless this could help to bring somewhat more speed into the stuttering vaccination campaign. The Hessian Minister of Health, Kai Klose, also sees it this way: "The inclusion of the regular medical structure is an important step towards expanding vaccinations and bringing them to the area. The relaxed transport and storage conditions of the vaccines as well as the larger available quantity now allow the inclusion of the established medical profession beyond model projects and in addition to the important vaccination centres and their mobile teams. I thank our partners in the vaccination alliance for the good preparation of the launch: the Association of Statutory Health Insurance Physicians of Hesse, the State Medical Association of Hesse, the General Practitioners Association of Hesse, the State Chamber of Pharmacists of Hesse and the Hessian Pharmacists Association" said Klose.
Participation for practices voluntary<x>.N</x>
Whether to offer vaccination to their patients is up to the practices. There is no mandatory participation of SHI-accredited practices. In advance, the practices could independently order vaccine doses from pharmaceutical wholesalers via pharmacies. "We are getting feedback from our partners in the Impfallianz Hessen that the willingness of medical professionals to get involved in the vaccinations is very high," reports Klose. The first vaccine doses were delivered to the practices yesterday, and the majority of doctors will begin vaccinations today accordingly.
A major advantage for the vaccination campaign is the relationship of trust between doctor and patient. Thus, the practicing physicians select the persons to be vaccinated on their own responsibility, taking into account the prioritization order according to the Corona vaccination regulation, and carry out the vaccinations. In doing so, they can draw on this information based on their knowledge and taking into account the individual patient biography.
Vaccinations for the time being exclusively with mRNA vaccine from BioNTech/Pfizer
For COVID-19 vaccinations in practices, the federal government will provide only BioNTech/Pfizer's mRNA vaccine for the first two weeks after vaccination begins. In subsequent weeks, other vaccines will be added and will likewise be supplied to art practices by pharmaceutical wholesalers and local pharmacies.
At the outset, the federal government has announced a supply of approximately 20 doses per practice. Given the increased supply levels announced for the coming weeks, that number will then steadily increase. "The scarcity of the vaccine is also the reason that initially only contract physicians will be included in the vaccinations. We are preparing to include structures such as company doctors, specialists and private physicians as soon as more vaccine is available and thank them for the high level of willingness that these groups have already indicated," Klose explained.
In vaccination centers, things continue
Of course, the start of vaccination in practices does not mean that vaccination centres are closing their doors. Here, things should continue as they have in recent weeks. After the resolution of the federation and the countries the inoculation centers are to receive in April weekly 2.25 million inoculation doses, on Hessen are allotted accordingly approximately 168,000 inoculation doses weekly. All doses exceeding this amount are to be made available to the practices. Since the federal government does not provide for a central register, it will not be possible to completely exclude the possibility of double appointments, especially at the beginning. Persons who receive an appointment through a general practitioner are asked to cancel a possibly already existing appointment at the vaccination centre or their cancel their registration to give others an option to vaccinate.