Both Lusail and Al Wakra drive-through vaccination centres are also set to close soon.
Qatar National Convention Center [QCC]’s Covid-19 vaccination centre has closed its doors after vaccinating more than 600,000 people, the Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) has announced.
During its initial stages, the centre was set up to focus on vaccinating teachers and school administrative staff to help limit the spread of infection at schools across the country.
However, as cases began to decrease and more people became eligible for vaccinations, the centre opened its doors to more people, welcoming more than 600,000 people.
The latest decision comes shortly after Qatar inaugurated one of the largest vaccination centres in the world, the Qatar Vaccination Center for the Business and Industry Sector.
The new centre is dedicated to vaccinating business and industry workers as a part of the country’s phased plan to lift Covid-19 restrictions. It covers more than 300,000 square meters, making it one of the largest vaccination centres in the world.
Hosting over 300 vaccination stations and 700 staff, the new centre has the capacity to administer more than 25,000 doses a day.
In addition to the 15,000 doses provided daily by 27 health centres, this brings up Qatar’s daily vaccination rate to around 40,000 doses a day.
“The opening of this new vaccination centre highlights Qatar’s commitment to continuing the fast roll-out of the National Covid-19 Vaccination Program which has seen a noticeable increase in the number of vaccinated people,” Minister of Public Health Dr. Hanan Mohamed Al Kuwari said at the opening of the new centre.
Given the new centre’s ability to significantly boost the capacity of the National Covid-19 Vaccination Programme, the ministry of health said it would also close two drive-through vaccination centres along with the QNCC.
The drive-through in Lusail was closed on June 23, while Al Wakra is scheduled to close by the end of this month.
Recent statistics from the ministry have shown that more than 330,000 people have used the Covid-19 drive-through centres.
So far, more than three million Covid-19 vaccine doses have been administrated by health authorities since the start of the National Vaccination Campaign in December, recent statistics by Qatar’s healthy ministry have shown.
The country has administered 3,075,375 Covid-19 vaccine doses, with over half of the population – aged 16 and above – now fully vaccinated against the novel coronavirus in the country.
In the last few months, the campaign has been rapidly sped up to ensure the safety of the community and to expedite the process to return back to normality.
According to figures, 61% of those 16 and over have received two doses while 72.8% have received one. The percentage of people over 40 years of age to receive one dose stands at 91% with 81.9% completing the course.
Meanwhile, 96.7% of those aged 60 and above received the first dose with 91.5% of this age group now fully vaccinated.
Dr. Soha Al Bayat, Head of Vaccination at the Ministry of Public Health has announced that Qatar plans to vaccinate at least 80% of its population by the end of this year.
The health official urged those who did not receive the Covid-19 vaccination to do so as quickly as possible so that the country would become one of the first countries to control the pandemic.
“80% of the population must be vaccinated so that the number of infection rate decreases further. It is expected that this percentage will be reached before the end of this year,” Dr. Al Bayat added.
Second wave suppressed
Qatar’s daily reported Covid-19 cases have been drastically decreasing in the last month, with health officials assuring that the second wave has been successfully suppressed.
Qatar is also set to be among the first countries to achieve herd immunity against Covid-19 in a months time, Dr. Mohammed bin Hamad Al Thani, Director of Public Health at the Ministry of Public Health announced earlier this month.
The health official also revealed that thanks to the country’s rapid vaccination drive and the public’s adherence to precautionary measures, the country is expected to open its doors to tourism “very soon.”
“We will be among the first countries to get the herd immunity in one month from now assuring that we can open in the coming months very soon for tourism. We will prefer vaccinated people in the first stage and then we can evaluate every case. The system is more sustainable for that,” he added.
Phase 2 of the gradual lifting of Covid-19 restrictions began in Qatar earlier this month, following a significant dip in daily and active cases.
The new eased regulations are part of a four-phase plan introduced by the ministry of health and the ministry of commerce in early May to slowly return to normality.
The regulations include increasing workforce capacity to 80%, allowing kids in malls and souqs again, allowing in-door and out-door weddings with a certain capacity, and allowing vaccinated fans to attend matches and tournaments in the country.
Amusement parks and all entertainment centres are also now open at a capacity not exceeding 30% in open spaces and 20% in closed spaces, provided that 75% of the customers are fully vaccinated.