QCOSTARICA – Tuesday night Costa Rica received a shipment of 79,560 doses, the largest single shipment so far, of the vaccine against covid-19 from Pfizer.
With this sixth batch, the total of vaccines received by Costa Rica is 183,885 doses, which will allow to continue with the process of the first priority group and start with the second group, according to the vaccination plan of the Ministry of Health.
The first batch of 9,750 doses arrived on December 23, 2020.
Around 9:00 pm DHL AERO EXPRESO 231 flight from Miami landed at the Juan Santamaria international airport, better known as the San Jose airport.
Of the total number of vaccines arriving Tuesday, 80% will be used to start the vaccination of the second priority group, which is made up of people over 58 years of age and over that will be carried out according to each health area, prioritizing from oldest to youngest.
The remaining 20% will be used to continue with the vaccination of the first priority group, which is the personnel of the first line of response to the pandemic.
“This very positive news continues to fuel hope. It is time to redouble care and continue the fight against the virus. Vaccination is the fundamental tool to move Costa Rica forward since in addition to protecting public health, it stimulates the country’s economic recovery and allows us to reduce the negative impacts of this pandemic that has proven so much to us,” said President Carlos Alvarado on Tuesday night.
On his part, Alexander Solís, president of the National Emergency Commission (CNE) indicated that he was pleased with the arrival of these vaccines, which will primarily serve the elderly.
“We have been in constant communication with the supplier company and deliveries in the coming weeks will be in quantities that will allow us to comply with the agreed supply,” said Solis.
Leandra Abarca Gómez, of the Epidemiological Surveillance of the Costa Rican Social Security Fund (CCSS), assured that the technical groups are preparing the strategy to vaccinate those over 58 years of age, without stopping the vaccination of the first priority group.
CCSS Logistics manager, Esteban Vega de la O, said that the doses that entered this Tuesday must go through quality control before being distributed to health facilities.
This Monday, the CCSS reported that 42,553 people from different areas of the country already have their complete vaccination cycle, that is, the two doses of the Pfizer vaccine.
On December 30 of last year, the second batch of 11,700 doses of the vaccine arrived, followed up with a delivery of 33,150 doses on January 5 and 12 and 16,575 doses on January 19, before Pfizer announced it would suspend deliveries for 15 days to realign its shipping strategy and increase it.
Solís also announced on Tuesday that the pharmaceutical AstraZeneca would ship the first 200,000 vaccines starting in May.
A little over a million doses will be purchased from this pharmaceutical company.
The CNE president reported that they were notified about three days ago of the approval of the product by the European Medicines Agency. With that, Solís said, the coordination to bring the vaccines began.
The other source of vaccine acquisition for Costa Rica is the mechanism known as COVAX of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), through which two million doses are scheduled to be received.