Monday 20 March 2023

“Chepito”, at 120, Costa Rica’s oldest gets vaccinated

Costa Rica's oldest person received the first dose at the nursing home, Hogar de Ancianos de Piedades de Santa Ana

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QCOSTARICA – José Uriel de los Ángeles Delgado Corrales, known affectionately as “Chepito”, at 120 and the oldest Costa Rican, received the first dose of the covid-19 vaccine on Tuesday.

Chepito, at 120, the older person in Costa Rica was the first resident of the Hogar de Ancianos de Piedades to be vaccinated against covid-19 on Tuesday. Photo: Courtesy Coopesana

Chepito was the first resident of the Piedades de Santa Ana nursing home to receive the doses brought by officials from Coopesana, a cooperative in charge of the health area in Santa Ana.

Kathleen Barquero, Coopesana’s chief nurse, was in charge of administering the doses at that center and she was proud to have injected Chepito.

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“It is a privilege to be able to vaccinate the oldest person in Costa Rica, especially because of the experience we have in the country of receiving a new vaccine and giving priority to the most vulnerable people, in this case, who live in long-term homes for the elderly. And what better example than with our beloved Chepito,” said the nurse.

Barquero explained that this Tuesday they had planned to start with the application of the first vaccines in the two long-stay homes in the canton of Santa Ana: Piedades and Villa Esperanza in San Rafael.

Chepito, who has lived in the Piedades home for more than 25 years, has won the affection of the health personnel and officials of that center, because of his humility and charisma.

The elderly and workers of long-stay homes are part of the first group of vaccination, according to the prioritization made by the Government.

Until this Monday, the Caja Costarricense de Seguro Social (CCSS) reported having applied doses of the Pfizer / BioNTech vaccine to some 23,000 people; and more than 130 second doses.

In this first group, there are also health officials, as well as front-line personnel in emergency care, among them police from the Public Force, municipal police, prison officials, firefighters, members of the Red Cross and personnel of the Comisión Nacional de Emergencias (CNE).

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Come March 10, José Uriel de los Ángeles Delgado Corrales will celebrate his 121st birthday. He is not only the older in Costa Rica but is not given the honor of the oldest man in the world. Why?

Two birthdays ago, Dadiany Dinatteo, administrator of the nursing home explained that the sisters of the home have provided Guinness World Records, on two occasions, the necessary documentation, however, the problem lies in that José Uriel Delgado Corrales was indigent for many years, and there are no records for Guinness to verify.

Chepito, 113 in the photo, holding up his cedula – the Costa Rican official ID

According to Dinatteo, Chepito arrived at the home in 1995, at 95 years of age. That year they went to the Civil Registry to obtain his cedula. Don José, with full clarity, he told the sisters who his parents and siblings were and where he was born. There they learned that he was born in 1900 and that he had no wife or children.

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