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COVID-19 vaccines approved for children aged 5 to 11 in Spain



COVID-19 vaccinations for children aged between 5 and 11 could begin in Spain as soon as mid-December.

The Public Health Commission has approved the extension of inoculations to 3.2 million younger children.

Evidence from Spain’s regions suggests that the still-to-be vaccinated group of youngsters is one of the biggest sources of new coronavirus cases.

Spain will start getting a shipment of 3.3 million doses of Pfizer vaccines aimed at the new age band from December 13.

1.3 million doses are expected this month with a further 2 million in January.

Supplies of the Moderna vaccine skewed at younger recipients are also expected next week.

It will then be down to the 17 regions to arrange the injections and to decide which children should be inoculated first.

There will be two injections separated by three weeks.

Pfizer has also introduced different colour caps for the vaccine vials, namely purple caps for the adult formula, and orange for those aged 11 and under.

The Spanish Paediatric Association’s Francisco Alvarez said: “The virus will not stop circulating among the population, because viruses circulate in bodies that are not immunised.”

“One of the categories is those who are aged under twelve years of age.”

Alvarez added that side effects produced in some adults taking the vaccines will be milder, as the dosage being offered to young children is smaller.

“Spain is a vaccinating country where parents trust doctors and if they have doubts they should ask their paediatrician or their paediatric nurse,” said Alvarez.


Alicante Province

New COVID-19 record but hospital admissions are much lower than 2021 numbers in Costa Blanca and Valencia areas of Spain




A new pandemic record daily total of 39,585 cases was reported this Tuesday in the Valencian Community.

Exactly a year ago, the total was 8,423.

The high case numbers are coming mainly via the Omicron variant with many more infections also being logged than 12 months ago when easily accessible testing was unavailable.

In contrast, hospital admissions this Tuesday stand at 1,861 compared to 4,777 on the same date in 2021.

A similar two-thirds drop has come in ICU admissions with 199 cases today as opposed to 601 a year ago.

Wastewater analysis in Alicante and Valencia over recent days suggest a fall in COVID case numbers in early February.

42 deaths were declared today, which is the single-biggest daily death toll since February 25.

The split was between 30 men aged 55 to 95, and 12 women aged 66 to 94.

It’s not known how many of the people who died were unvaccinated.

A year ago, 96 fatalities attributed to COVID-19 were reported.

The Valencian government will this week ask the regional Superior Court for permission to continue using COVID passports for indoor access to hospitality and entertainment venues beyond the current January 31 expiry date.


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Gibraltar’s Chief Minister dismisses ‘false nonsense’ circulating over mark-up of lateral flow tests on the Rock




THE Gibraltar government was pushed to reveal details of the Rock’s procurement of Lateral Flow Tests (LFTs) after rumours circulated that it was profiting from a mark up.

Unlike in many countries, including the UK and Spain, LFTs are not sold over the counter for use at home but are offered under supervision by pharmacies on the Rock, with some putting on a price tag as high as £30.

Opposition party Together Gibraltar suggested the Gibraltar Health Authority ‘could well be making profits in the region of a 100% mark up.”

Chief Minister Fabian Picardo responded to the slurs branding them a ‘completely untrue allegation’ and ‘completely false nonsense’

“This LIE is designed to make people lose confidence,” he insisted. Adding: “We continue to provide thousands of free tests.”

But Together Gibraltar called for transparency and questioned why pharmacies can only buy LFTs from the GHA (Gibraltar health authority) at a cost of £5.40 almost double the €2.94 consumer price cap over the border in Spain.

Marlene Hassan Nahon, the leader of TG insisted: “The public deserves full transparency on the mystery of this great mark up on lateral flow tests and why they are not subjected to the same anti-profiteering rules as other Covid-related items.”

On Monday No.6 Convent Place issued a statement dismissing claims of profiteering with the reminder that tests are provided free of charge at the Midtown drive-through.

It also revealed the procurement process explaining that ‘the GHA purchased the majority of LFTs at a cost of £5.40 per test from Francisco Navarro, a commercial pharmacist based in La Linea and sells them to permit-holding pharmacies and clinics at cost price.’

“In basing their entire argument on the availability of LFTs at pharmacies in Spain at a consumer cost of €2.94, Ms Hassan Nahon’s party completely overlook the fact that the Spanish government, similar to other governments worldwide, heavily subsidise the final price to consumers of these tests for at-home use. It is therefore entirely WRONG to assume that tests are available for wholesale purchase and exportation at anywhere near this price,” read the government statement.


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Top holiday areas of Costa Blanca and the Balearic Islands in Spain want tourists to get free COVID tests

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Fraudsters charge anti-vaxxers in Spain up to €1,000 for bogus COVID-19 passports and PCR test results




SEVEN members of a gang who sold fake COVID-19 passports to anti-vaxxers have been arrested by the Policia Nacional in Spain.

The Spanish branch of a French-led operation reeled in around 1,600 unvaccinated customers.

They illegally ended up on Spain’s National Vaccination Registry with the assistance of health workers.

Six of the arrests have been in Madrid along with one detention in Barcelona.

They face forgery and public health crime charges including the possible theft of passwords to access the National Registry.

The Policia Nacional say they also plan to investigate the 1,600 clients.

They were attracted by adverts placed on anti-vaccination social media sites distributed via an instant messaging phone app.

A series of tariffs were created by the gang.

In most cases, payments were made via cryptocurrencies or transfers to bank accounts outside Spain that made police tracking more difficult.

QR codes with the bogus vaccination schedule were then sent to buyers within a couple of days.

The Policia Nacional’s investigation remains open with further arrests not being ruled out.

They have passed on all of their findings to their French counterparts.


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