Etihad Airways issued a press release on Wednesday about its self-reported accomplishment.
The Abu Dhabi-headquartered airline states 100% of its operating pilots and cabin crew have been vaccinated for the novel coronavirus.
On Feb. 10, 2021, Etihad Airways issued a press release stating the airline is the first in the world to have a fully vaccinated onboard crew. (Etihad Airways)
“We proactively made the vaccine available to all our employees to not only help combat the effects of COVID-19 but to make travelers feel confident and reassured the next time they fly with us,” the Etihad Aviation Group’s CEO Tony Douglas said, in a statement.
He added: “We are the only airline in the world to make COVID-19 testing mandatory for every passenger and crew member before every flight and now, we’re the first airline in the world with 100% vaccinated crew on board.”
Douglas also noted he chose to get vaccinated “early on” to show his support for the UAE’s national vaccination program and encourage eligible Etihad employees to get vaccinated as well.
Not only were higher-ups at Etihad Airways encouraging onboard employees to receive a vaccination, but the airline also became “an approved COVID-19 vaccination clinic to support our staff, and their dependents,” according to Dr. Nadia Bastaki – who is the Etihad Aviation Group’s vice president of medical services and corporate social responsibility.
“Since December 2020, we have been offering in-house vaccination appointments to our employees and their loved ones to ensure we are focused on our employee’s wellbeing,” Bastaki said in a statement.
Etihad Airways worked with the United Arab Emirates government to become an approved COVID-19 vaccination clinic, which supported its coronavirus vaccination efforts among staff. (iStock)
The UAE is reportedly aiming to vaccinate half of its population before the end of March, according to Reuters. In late January, the news outlet said health records at the time showed the Middle Eastern country had delivered vaccines to more than 20% of its population.
According to the UAE Government portal, the nation’s population surpassed 9 million in 2014.
Data from the Johns Hopkins COVID-19 Dashboard show the country as whole experienced a spike in new coronavirus cases at the start of the new year, however, it appears new cases are currently in decline.
Compared to the rest of the world, the UAE’s coronavirus numbers are rather low. There have been a little more than 336,140 confirmed cases since the pandemic’s beginning in early March last year.
Reuters contributed to this report.