Netherlands considers walk-in vaccinations, shorter time between shots — but don’t call GGD just yet

Are you one of those people who wants to be vaccinated sooner, rather than later — particularly amid spiraling coronavirus infections in the Netherlands?

Good news: walk-in appointments and a shorter gap between each vaccination could be on the way.

After the government’s plan to reopen without restrictions failed spectacularly and sparked a public apology, Health Minister Hugo de Jonge wants to get people fully vaccinated even sooner.

Your second jab faster than ever

De Jonge made the announcement last Friday, but the GGD is warning that it hasn’t happened yet — so is begging people to stop calling the vaccination lines to ask.

“Many people call us, for example, because they want to quickly get their second shot before they go on holiday. But that makes no sense yet,” said a GGD spokesperson to NU.nl. “We’re still setting up that process.”

The current waiting time between each jab is at least five weeks. However, although Pfizer recommends a three week gap between injections and Moderna suggests four weeks, these time frames may not necessarily be what the Netherlands puts into practice.

“We are still looking at what time is the most sensible with regard to the effectiveness of the vaccine, for example,” says the spokesperson. “And the vaccines must of course be guaranteed to be in stock: we are still getting deliveries.”

Walk-in appointments in the works

Ever been out for a morning walk and thought “Hmm, I might pop in for a vaccination against that deadly virus that’s been ravaging the world for the past year”?

Soon, you may be able to act on that dream (and if you do, we also suggest treating yourself to a warme Chocomel after 😉). The GGD is working on a system to let people get a vaccination without booking in advance.

“We want to create the space at our locations to be able to go without an appointment,” says Jaap Donker, director of the Public Health at the GGD in Utrecht. “We have already looked at whether that would work in our country and we see that it works out well for some people.”

By providing shots on demand, vaccination could become more accessible — particularly for people who feel concerned about receiving a vaccine.

“We also see that there is a lot of fake news in circulation, so it helps to have a doctor or nurse there who can properly inform people. We will facilitate that,” says Donker.

Will you be trying to move up your vaccination — or be taking advantage of a walk-in appointment? Tell us in the comments below!

Feature Image: Gustavo Fring/Pexels

Samantha Dixon 🇦🇺
Samantha Dixon 🇦🇺
Sam isn’t great at being Dutch. Originally hailing from Australia, she came to study in the Netherlands without knowing where the country was on a map. She once accidentally ordered the entire ice-cream menu at Smullers. She still can’t jump on the back of a moving bike. But, she remains fascinated by the tiny land of tall people.

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