Press conference with Alain Berset – Switzerland has a “binding reservation” with Pfizer-Biontech


The Federal Council has increased the credit for the purchase of a Covid 19 vaccine by 100 400 million francs high. Health Minister Alain Berset announced Wednesday to the Bundeshaus media. The federal government relies on several manufacturers.

The amount comes from Covid-19 loans that have already been approved and included in the army budget, Berset said. It is not yet possible to say for sure which companies or which vaccines will prevail and be made available to the Swiss population.

One booking and two contracts

A “binding reservation” exist with the German company Biontech and the pharmaceutical company PfizerBerset said. They recently announced that their vaccine offered more than 90% protection.

The federal government has already signed contracts with two other manufacturers. In August, Switzerland secured 4.5 million doses of the vaccine from Moderna. In mid-October, a contract was signed with the pharmaceutical company Astrazeneca for the delivery of up to 5.3 million doses.

In addition, there is participation in the international Covax initiative, a global purchase program for the purchase of Covid-19 vaccines for up to 20% of the population. According to the Federal Office of Public Health (BAG), this would “ideally” equate to up to 3.2 million additional vaccine doses,

Additionally, the federal government took out insurance over the summer Molecular partner immunotherapy for the treatment of Covid-19 infections. In some cases, the drug could also be given prophylactically to protect against infection, the BAG writes.

BAG: First vaccinations in the first half of 2021

Berset pointed out that it is not yet possible to say when a vaccine will be available. He sincerely hopes this will happen next year. The FOPH speculates that the first vaccinations could be carried out in Switzerland in the first half of 2021.

There would be no compulsory vaccination, Berset assured. The BAG assumes that risk groups would be vaccinated, as was told at the press conference. It will take several doses for a vaccination, Berset said.

The Federal Council is closely monitoring the development of vaccines. Logistically it will be very demanding. For example, such vaccines should be stored at very, very low temperatures.

“Encouraging, but not much more”

The health minister said the epidemiological situation remains tense at a high level. The challenge for the health system, especially for hospitals, remains high. Some facilities are on the edge. The increase in numbers is slowing down.

The The reproduction rate must be well below 1 sink before the situation can relax. “Right now, we are about a hundred people infecting a hundred people,” Berset said. He had the impression that the development of the last few days was “encouraging”, “but not much more”.

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