In a note sent to the media, the team responsible for the vaccination process reminds people that they should use the 'open house' programme, with no restriction on age or place of residence, because the centres currently open for vaccinations will soon be used for flu jabs.

"Only together and with a sense of individual and community responsibility will it be possible to defeat this virus", said the 'task force', recognizing the current "lower vaccination rate", given the complete vaccination of more than 83% of the population residing in Portugal . Due to the availability of vaccines, the second doses may be given at a different vaccination centre from the one where the first inoculation was given.

The General Directorate of Health announced on Thursday that the first phase of free flu vaccination starts next Monday and covers people in "certain contexts", such as nursing homes, long-term care networks, professionals from the National Health Service and pregnant women.