Malta has not been spared the health, economic and social effects and challenges posed by COVID-19 over most of 2020 and 2021.
The well-being of the population was understandably given top priority through restrictive and containment measures to control the spread of the virus. The programme was strongly supported by the population largely resulting in a relatively low number of infections and deaths.
A rapid vaccination programme which was rolled out at the tail end of 2020 has been similarly successful with the number of fully vaccinated persons over 12 years old reaching 94 per cent of the population.
Inevitably, being heavily exposed to the tourist industry, the pandemic took its toll on the Maltese economy but robust support measures and initiatives were applied to keep the economy afloat, safeguard jobs and assist workers and vulnerable persons.
On the social front, at the onset of the pandemic in Spring 2020, the Ministry for Social Policy and Children's Rights stepped into the breach to support impacted families and vulnerable persons through specially tailored social security measures