The purpose of this research is to provide a general overview of the manifestation of the COVID-19 pandemic in Kosovo and the overall management of the pandemic by relevant institutions. The analysis is based on data collected through publicly available information, national statistics, news articles, as well as research reports by local non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and international organizations and missions in the country.
The COVID-19 pandemic of the novel coronavirus was first identified in Wuhan, China in December 2019. It quickly spread to other parts of the world, leading to the World Health Organization declaring a pandemic on March 11, 202012. Countries across the globe implemented various measures to control the spread of the virus, including lockdowns, travel restrictions and mask mandates. The COVID-19 vaccine was soon developed, and the vaccine roll out began in the first months of 2021, with many countries still being in the process of vaccinating their populations. The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on Kosovo, as it has had in many countries around the world. The first cases of COVID-19 in Kosovo were reported in March 202014, and since then the country has implemented measures such as lockdowns, mask mandates, and travel restrictions to try to control the spread of the virus. Kosovo faced many challenges in its efforts to control the spread of the virus, including limited healthcare resources, vaccine hesitancy, political instability and economic hardship, to name a few.15 The COVID-19 vaccine roll-out in Kosovo began in the first months of 2021 and was implemented with a phased approach, whereby some groups, such as healthcare workers, the elderly, and persons with underlying conditions, were given priority, before vaccinating the rest of the population. AstraZeneca and Pfizer BioNTech were the two vaccinees administered in Kosovo. These vaccines were secured through various sources, including through the COVAX facility.