Seniors over 60 who have not booked an appointment to get at least the first dose of a vaccination against Covid-19 will have to pay a fine each month starting Monday, January 17, Greek authorities said on Wednesday.
Speaking on SKAI television, Health Ministry General Secretary Marios Themistocleous said there would be no extension to the rule for those aged over 60.
“Whoever does not get vaccinated will pay the fine every month,” he said.
He noted for January only the fine will be 50 euros, after that it rises to 100 euros.
The decision comes as Greece faces a strong wave of Omicron infections. In the last 24 hours, the country reported 24,246 Covid-19 cases, 77 deaths and an increase in intubations putting pressure on the public health system.
At the same time, on Wednesday, authorities decided to extend Covid-19 measures, including midnight curfews for bars, restaurants and cafes, no music at venues and mandatory high-protection masks at supermarkets and on public transport until January 23.
In the meantime, the government is also considering making vaccination mandatory for those aged 50 or over, said Themistocleous, adding however that a decision will be made after evaluating the effectiveness of the current measure and developments on the Covid front.
Themistocleous added that issues concerning citizens vaccinated abroad had been resolved and clarified that fines apply only to Greek citizens. Those who have been vaccinated abroad in 33 countries and territories recognized by the EU Digital Certificate system can now receive recognition of vaccination status here. Individuals vaccinated in the US or in non-EU countries are advised to visit a Citizens’ Service Center (KEP).