With the COVID-19 pandemic at full swing mass vaccination is the only solution for the problem. World healthcare community is unanimous about this. Mass vaccination in Serbia started in January 2021 and until the date of publishing this post 2,2 million people in Serbia received at least first dose and more than 800,000 got the second one as well. Having in mind that the population of Serbia is around 7 million people, these numbers are encouraging.
Recently vaccination in Serbia started to be available for foreign citizens as well. We will explain how you can get your shot of this life saving remedy, if you can’t get in your country.
What makes vaccination in Serbia more successful than in some other countries
Even though Serbia isn’t very big, rich nor powerful in the global scale, authorities managed to source vaccines from several producers. And what is more important, apparently they managed to do that in timely manner. Since Serbia is still not part of EU, we are not tied with restrictions and political agendas which prevent other EU member countries to acquire vaccines from Russian and Chinese vendors. On the other hand, there were no limits to purchase vaccines from Western producers as well. The first vaccine that was approved in Serbia was Pfizer-Biontech, and right after that Russian Sputnik V and Chinese Sinofarm. Now we have five different vaccines registered.
Which vaccines are available for vaccination in Serbia
As mentioned above at the moment Serbian public health system is “armed” with five registered vaccines by ALIMS, which is an agency for medicine and medical devices of Serbia. Following vaccines are registered and available:
- Sputnik V
The most frequent ones are Sinofarm and Sputnik V, but AstraZeneca and Pfizer-Biontech are not falling behind. So far it’s unknown if Moderna is distributed for the population, even though it’s available during the registration process for vaccination.
Vaccination applying process
In order to get vaccinated, both locals and foreigners, use the same process. The first step is to “show the interest in the vaccination process against COVID-19” by filling out the online form from this link. Once you click on the link you’ll end up with the following screen:
It’s in Serbian Cyrillic only, even though it’s intended for foreign citizens as well. No English version available yet. There are three categories who can apply: Citizens of the Republic of Serbia, Foreigners with residence in the Republic of Serbia and Foreigners without residence in the Republic of Serbia. Drop down menu offers one of these tree options. After that, usual fields with mandatory information are required such as: passport number, name, surname, email address, mobile phone number (only Serbian numbers are accepted), preferred municipality of vaccination and then other medical or vaccine related questions.
After you complete the form and submit it, you’ll get confirmation to your email. Note that this is just a form where you show the interest and apply for type of vaccine(s) you would like to get immunized with. It doesn’t guarantee that you’ll get the invitation, or how quick you’ll get it. One of the factors is availability of the vaccine(s) that you selected during the registration process. If the one(s) that you selected is(are) available, you can expect to receive email and SMS with QR code within few days. If not, you need to wait until it is. At this moment vaccine is free even for foreign citizens.
Alternative to the above process are campaigns. During the campaigns mass immunization is ongoing without any preregistration process. You just need to show up on site, present an ID (passport for foreign citizens) and you’ll get the vaccine. At the moment when this post is written campaign with AstraZeneca in Belgrade fairground is ongoing. The campaign lasts from the 21st till 28th of March.
How future campaigns will be organized, remains to be seen.
On the day of vaccination, show up at appointed time with filled out form which you’ll receive to your email together with the appointment invitation. The process is well organized. Even on the busiest days entire process doesn’t last longer than 30 min.
After you get the jab, you’ll get both paper and electronic vaccination certificate. Also, you’ll receive an SMS with the information about the second jab waiting period. The period between first and second jab depends on the respective vaccine. It varies from three to eight (even twelve) weeks.
Vaccination for foreign tourists
After the news about possibility that foreigners can get the vaccine in Serbia spread around the globe, we started receiving inquiries for assistance with the process. If you are interested in getting a vaccine in Serbia please read this post.
If you need a negative PCR test for your return trip please read the following post.