In his speech that opened the debate on the state of the nation António Costa announced the goal of vaccinating children, which is primarily intended to protect the start of the next school year, , in parliament.

“We are in a race against time, a race between vaccination and new variants”, said António Costa, stating that, so far, his Government has fulfilled the established goals.

“As expected, by mid-August we will have 73 percent of the adult population with full vaccination and 82 percent with at least the first dose administered. It is time to broaden our ambition and also guarantee the protection of children and young people”, he declared.

According to António Costa, it is necessary to anticipate goals in relation to this age group, “so that the new school year can restart without risk of new interruptions in classroom teaching”.

“We await a final decision from the General Directorate of Health on the vaccination of this population. But everything is prepared for the weekends between 14 August and 19 September to administer the two doses of vaccine to approximately 570 thousand children and young people between 12 and 17 years old”, declared the prime minister.

In the speech he also spoke of the 1.383 billion € of the Recovery and Resilience Plan (PRR) which will be dedicated to “strengthening mental and oral health programs, equipping health centers with complementary diagnostic tools, creating new mobile units for the providing health care in low-density regions, opening an additional 5,500 beds for long-term care and another 400 for palliative care”.