RIGA - In anticipation of larger deliveries of vaccines in early April, Prime Minister Krisjanis Karins (New Unity) expressed confidence that Latvia will be prepared for handling large volumes of vaccines and mass vaccination in order to reduce the spread of Covid-19 in the country in rapid steps.
At a press conference on Wednesday, after meeting with President Egils Levits, Karins said that the main topic of the conversation was the pandemic. Karins noted that Latvia is facing a challenge - a new, more contagious type of the virus is spreading throughout Europe and also in Latvia, moreover, in Estonia, incidence is rising uncontrollably. He reminded that Latvia yesterday offered assistance to Estonia, expressing its readiness to admit their Covid-19 patients to the Latvian system if they needed it and this would help.
Karins explained that the provision of assistance to Estonia has been discussed with the Latvian Minister of Health in order to understand how much Latvia can support Estonia in a time of crisis. According to the Prime Minister, the Estonian hospital system is on the verge of collapse and Latvia, as a neighbor, must help.
The Prime Minister expressed confidence that if the Latvian hospital system were on the verge of collapse, Estonia would do the same with a helping hand.
"It is very difficult for them. In most European countries, the incidence is currently rising again or the so-called "third wave" has begun. We are fortunate to be among the few countries whose incidence continues to decline," said the Prime Minister, expressing hope that this downward trend will continue.
Therefore, on Tuesday, the government decided on strengthening measures that do not radically change the various types of restrictions, but clarifies them, thus helping to ensure that the "third wave" will not lead to a new increase in infection rates in Latvia, said Karins.
The Prime Minister said that April is approaching, when a large amount of vaccines is expected. The government has heard an interim report by the Minister of Health Daniels Pavluts (For Development) and the Vaccination Project Bureau on mass vaccination, including where large vaccination centers will be established. Such interim reports are planned to be heard at each government meeting to follow the progress of the process.
"It is important for us that by the beginning of April these large [vaccination] centers are up and running,'' Karins said.
According to the Prime Minister, the Vaccination Project Bureau and the Union of Local Governments of Latvia have confirmed that the centers will be ready by the beginning of April.
The Prime Minister reiterated that the way out of the Covid-19 crisis is vaccination and the country is going for it.
Speaking about the stability of the government, Karins thinks that the government is stable and its work is moving forward. The Prime Minister revealed that, as Prime Minister, he assesses and looks at what the government still needs to do to ensure the transformation of the economy through the crisis and to emerge from the crisis with the opportunity to be a more prosperous nation.