CHINA Optimized services promote COVID-19 vaccination for the elderly


Optimized services promote COVID-19 vaccination for the elderly

10:48, December 18, 2022

On Thursday, 92-year-old Tang Zhaoyou, an academician with the Chinese Academy of Engineering, came to the vaccination site of Zhongshan Hospital affiliated to Fudan University in Shanghai, ready to complete his COVID-19 vaccine booster shot.

Tang filled out an informed consent form, verified his ID information, and completed the monitoring of his basic vital signs. Once the injection was completed, observation for half an hour was required.

"Each of us should be responsible for our own health," said Tang, also the honorary director of the Liver Cancer Institute at Fudan University. He added that it is especially important for seniors aged over 80 to be vaccinated -- as this not only protects their own health, but also the health of their families.

According to Tang, for the elderly, the most important reason for COVID-19 vaccination is to reduce their risk of developing severe illness.

The Chinese government recently released a work plan aimed at ramping up vaccination among its elderly population, in order to better protect this vulnerable group.

This work plan called for efforts to accelerate the increase of the vaccination rate among people aged 80 and above, and also to continue to raise the vaccination rate among people aged between 60 and 79.

In Beijing, the Pingguoyuan sub-district of Shijingshan District has been optimizing its vaccination services, so as to better meet the vaccination needs of the elderly.

Xu Xiaotao, a staffer with Xiazhuang community under Pingguoyuan, said that a notice was circulated among the residents to inform them of the time and place of vaccination. They were also told that if there were elderly people who could not go out for vaccination, they could make an appointment to have an inoculation team sent to their home.

The inoculation team, comprising about five to six community workers and medics, is usually responsible for vaccinating senior citizens in over 30 households in the course of an afternoon.

Luo Yan, a team member and a medic from Beijing Rehabilitation Hospital under Capital Medical University, said that when they inoculate the seniors at their homes, they would first check their health and inquire about their underlying conditions.

Luo added that if their underlying conditions were under control, they would carry out the vaccination after the assessment, and following communication with their family members and the signing of the informed consent.

In southwest China's Chongqing Municipality, Wanzhou District has set up 53 vaccination sites and adopted measures including launching a "green channel" for the elderly and providing a door-to-door service for them.

In recent days, there has been an increase in the number of people visiting a health service center in the Bai'anba sub-district of Wanzhou to get vaccinated, especially those over 60.

"I'm 77 years old, and I'm here for my third shot. I believe in science, and it's good for me," said Tu Houlong, a resident who came to the center for a booster shot.

To guarantee the safety of the elderly, the center has set up an area for first aid and equipped it with first aid equipment and drugs.

Fan Meng, an official with the center, said that they provide convenience for them to the greatest extent possible, and step up the scientific publicity of their vaccination work.

The full vaccination rate for COVID-19 has exceeded 90 percent in China.

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