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Vaccinating Healthcare Workers ‘Top Priority’ After New Coronavirus Strain Found In Malta, Says Head Of Medical Association 

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Inoculating healthcare workers must become a top priority, according to the head of Malta’s Medical Association Martin Balzan, following the discovery of a new, infectious strain of the coronavirus in Malta. 

“The implication is that the new strain is much more contagious meaning vaccinating healthcare staff is even more of a priority,” Balzan told Lovin Malta.

Earlier today, Health Minister Chris Fearne announced that a new coronavirus strain originating from the United Kingdom had made its way to Malta with the first cases currently in quarantine and contact tracing underway.

“There are enough vaccines to vaccinate all healthcare professionals. We’re putting pressure on the administration to vaccinate them all within five weeks.”

In order to do so, the MAM is urging health authorities to vaccinate more healthcare workers per day. 

“We have been informed that 150 healthcare workers are going to be inoculated per day, but we want it to go up to 300,” he said.

The variant is known to be more transmissible than the current COVID-19 strain, though is not known to be deadlier, according to initial studies.  

It is as yet unknown who exactly was exposed to the virus and how it was discovered on the island – however, Superintendent for Public Health Charmaine Gauci is set to address her weekly press conference this afternoon, and is believed to be set to clarify what happened.  

The variant has also been found in other countries like Denmark and France.

“For the general public, all the indications are that it is much more contagious. We must be extra careful now,” Balzan said.

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