Prime minister: We are discussing a vaccine mandate in Slovakia

The statements come on the heels of the announced vaccine mandate in the neighbouring Austria the day before.

PM Eduard Heger was vaccinated in Bratislava during the first weekend of May. He received the AstraZeneca vaccine. PM Eduard Heger was vaccinated in Bratislava during the first weekend of May. He received the AstraZeneca vaccine. (Source: Twitter account of Eduard Heger)

A Covid vaccine mandate for selected groups of the population based on age would be an ideal way to fight the coronavirus pandemic, Slovak PM Eduard Heger (OĽaNO) said on Saturday.

Heger brought up the topic of compulsory vaccination one day after the government in Slovakia's neighbouring country, Austria, was the first in Europe to announce it was going to mandate the Covid vaccination by February 2022.

On November 20, Slovakia reported the highest coronavirus infection incidence per capita globally: the seven-day rolling average of new confirmed infections exceeded 1,677 per one million as of Saturday. The number of people in hospitals came close to 3,000. The vaccination rate belongs among the lowest in the EU, nearing 47 percent of the population.

Speaking on the Slovak Radio on November 20, Heger said he had been discussing making the vaccine mandatory for everyone 65+, or 60+, or even 50+ in Slovakia with doctors and lawyers for two weeks.

"It is very important that constitutional lawyers say whether our constitution allows for the vaccination of a certain age group of the population," Heger said on the radio.

Heger also did not rule out there will be an all-out lockdown in Slovakia if the situation does not improve within the next week. Stricter measures, which he branded earlier as a lockdown for the unvaccinated, come into force in the country as of Monday, November 22.

Related articleCan I go to the hairdresser or shopping if I'm not vaccinated? (Q&A about new rules) Read more 

While experts suggest that mandatory vaccination is constitutional, the opposition was quick to reject the notion as such.

Jabs mandatory for some, or even for all

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