BAKU, Azerbaijan, Jan. 12
I have been vaccinated for the third time and I recommend that everyone do the same, President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev said in an interview with local TV channels on January 12, 2022, Trend reports.
“Azerbaijan is one of the countries that are taking this difficult test with dignity. However, our losses are not small either, and every dying person is our citizen, of course. I want to express my condolences to the families of all the victims. We started addressing this issue seriously from the very beginning. As you probably remember, we were the first country in the CIS to start vaccination. I remember exactly that on 18 January last year, we already received vaccines. At that time, it was a big problem to import vaccines, but it is no longer the case. Because the number of vaccines was very limited and brotherly Turkey helped us a lot at the first stage. Through Turkey, we brought in Sinovac vaccines and started the process of vaccination. After that, we signed direct contracts with both Sinovac and Pfizer. These are the mainly used vaccines, and we have greatly expanded our capabilities in the field of medicine. As you know, modular hospitals have been brought to our country, we have provided the “Yeni klinika”, the best hospital, for the disposal of COVID patients. A total of 46 of our hospitals are currently treating COVID patients. I think the results in this area are not too bad,” President Ilham Aliyev said.
“According to the latest data on vaccination, about 64 percent of the population over the age of 18 have already received two doses, while the figure for the total population is smaller. At the same time, more than 1.5 million people have received the booster dose, including myself. I am saying this for the first time. I have been vaccinated for the third time and I recommend that everyone do the same,” the head of state said.
“Currently, the main problem in many countries is associated with the number of patients and the lack of hospital beds. In our case, the situation is positive. We currently have 10,000 beds, of which only 10 percent are occupied. That is, 9,000 beds are vacant. God forbid, if the pandemic spreads, we have enough opportunities. An important issue here is the availability of resuscitation facilities. We have 875 intensive care units, 26 percent of which is occupied. We also have enough vacant resuscitation facilities here. So from this point of view, we can feel comfortable. This is why we have removed almost all restrictions. Many countries are now going into lockdown again and imposing new restrictions. This has a very negative impact on people's psychological condition and economic activity. We did everything according to the situation, closed and opened if necessary. So the main issue here is to reduce the spread of this virus. I must also say that the people of Azerbaijan also behave very responsibly. We do not have any anti-COVID tendencies, anti-COVID campaigns. People consciously get vaccinated and understand that it protects them. There are very few deaths among vaccinated people. Some of the vaccinated people may die from a serious illness or a chronic condition. There are many people I know who have been vaccinated and then infected, but mostly very mildly. I even know people who got infected with “omicron” and recovered in five to six days without any serious symptoms. It seems that “omicron” is a weaker virus. To be honest, I am not an expert, so I would not want to comment on it so broadly. But my observations show that it is more contagious, but the complications are less severe,” Azerbaijani president said.
“But no-one knows that for sure. Of course, we must follow the situation. The main thing is to protect ourselves, all of us. Each of us should get a vaccine and check the number of those antibodies from time to time. I also check myself, give blood tests and look. Why was I vaccinated for the third time? Because I saw that I already had a low level of antibodies. They may drop to a level equal to not having been vaccinated, so I took the third dose, the booster dose. There was no impact. There are no complications in Azerbaijan at all. Because both Sinovac and Pfizer seem to be very healthy and high-quality vaccines. So this is my advice, and of course, protect yourselves and your parents. Older people need to protect themselves in particular. We need to adapt to all these new rules of conduct. Let's see now. It is said that these viruses lose their strength over the years and then turn into a common flu. I hope we will see that too,” the head of state said.