Minister of Health Khalid Ait Taleb said scientists do not know whether COVID-19 will be gone entirely or will become seasonal like H1N1.
Rabat – As the country’s COVID-19 vaccine campaign nears, Morocco’s Minister of Health expects the country to reach a collective immunity against the virus in early May.
He said on Thursday that the country will reach herd immunity against COVID-19 based on a 12-week vaccine campaign.
Ait Taleb recalled that Morocco chose to target 80% of the population to curb the pandemic, which has significantly impacted the country’s socio-economic development.
“The achievement of collective immunity will take time,” he acknowledged.
The official said the vaccination campaign will take place during the pandemic period in strict compliance with all preventive measures.
“It will be necessary to wait a period of more than 14 days after receiving the second dose so that each individual can reach a certain level of immunity,” Ait Taleb stressed.
Morocco’s health minister emphasized that only time will reveal how long the COVID-19 vaccine will remain effective against the virus.
Ait Taleb did not exclude the possibility that COVID-19 could become seasonal like H1N1, which is part of “the influenza vaccination program.”
In response to questions regarding the start of the COVID-19 vaccination campaign, Ait Taleb said the country will launch the process after receiving the vaccine doses.
Morocco’s government said the country bought 65 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines. Morocco will use China’s Sinopharm and British-Swedish AstraZeneca vaccines.
“There is no specific date, but the preparations are there. The country is ready to start the campaign,” the minister said.
Ait Taleb reassured that the large-scale operation will cover the entire national territory and will require significant logistical and human resources.
The official acknowledged that there were some challenges in the health system, especially in the management of non-COVID-19 diseases.
“There was a global health emergency. Its management was a priority,” the official said.
To date, Morocco has recorded 456,334 COVID-19 cases, including 431,167 recoveries and 7,854 deaths.