After the corona, a consultation with a doctor about vaccination is mandatory

Fact checking

Miona Miljanic, UNICEF young reporter
fact checking blog visual
UNICEF Montenegro
14 April 2021

With the finding of a coronavirus vaccine, various pieces of unverified information about vaccination have been appearing in the media and on social networks. Although, according to a survey conducted by the Ipsos agency in February 2021, more than 50 percent of citizens are willing to be vaccinated against coronavirus, there are still a large number of people who are hesitant about immunization because they are worried about the speed of approval of the new vaccines and the possible side-effects.

Almost 10,000 people in Montenegro have already had the virus, so one of the most frequent questions is whether they should/are allowed to be vaccinated. We looked for the answer on the website of the Public Health Institute of Montenegro.

"Vaccination is voluntary and recommended. Given the serious health risks and the fact that it is possible to be re-infected with the COVID-19 virus, it is advised that you should receive the vaccine regardless of whether you have already recovered from the disease. Experts do not yet know how long the acquired immunity lasts after having the disease, although cases of re-infection are rare. Natural and vaccine-acquired immunity are both important factors in preventing the spread of the virus.

– says the official website of the Public Health Institute of Montenegro.

UNICEF's young reporters also asked experts from the Clinical Centre of Montenegro whether the vaccine should be given to those who have already had the virus:

Along with previous clinical examinations and some additional analyses, it is necessary to consult with one’s chosen doctor regarding receiving the vaccine against COVID-19.

Dr. Vladimir Jovanovic from the Clinical Centre

Given the limited number of vaccines in Montenegro, priority groups have been identified in the guidelines and recommendations issued by the key national public health organizations.

According to information from CovidOdgovor.me, a website with all the news about the virus which is maintained by the Government of Montenegro, the stages of vaccination are as follows:

  1. Residents of homes for the elderly and institutions for the accommodation of persons with severe disability.
  2. Healthcare workers/​associates and other staff in healthcare facilities working with SARS-CoV-2-infected persons; All persons aged 80+.
  3. All persons aged 75–79.
  4. All persons aged 70–74; Clinically very sensitive/vulnerable persons.
  5. All persons aged 65–69; Other employees in public and private healthcare institutions.
  6. Adults aged 45–64 who fall into risk categories; Members of vital services at the state and local levels.
  7. Adults aged 18–44 who fall into risk categories; All persons aged 60–64.
  8. All persons aged 50–59.

We conclude that those who have had the coronavirus should consult with the chosen doctor and decide on vaccination based on their doctor’s recommendations. And all those who use online media and social networks as a source of information must carefully read and follow the instructions from the official institutions.

In an effort to contribute to preventing the dissemination of coronavirus misinformation and to promoting credible sources of information, UNICEF’s young reporters have decided to check the accuracy of information published on social media and in the media that has attracted public attention. In verifying the accuracy of information, they have followed the example of the Public Disclosure Platform “Raskrinkavanje“ and partly used its publicly available methodology.