QCOSTARICA – The Covid-19 vaccination campaign in Costa Rica is excepted to accelerate likely in February when the number of vaccines received in January would double, thanks to the arrival of the first doses developed by AstraZeneca.
“By February we hope to double the arrival of January vaccines; in addition, it could be receiving the first doses of AstraZeneca preliminarily, this is yet to be confirmed, but initially in February we would have twice as many vaccines as in January,” said Pedro González, Vice Minister of Health.
The initial estimate, counting only the vaccines made by Pfizer / BioNTech, is that in January it will close with the delivery of 200,000 doses and by March it will increase to 300,000 doses.
However, the amount can vary and even Pfizer announced to the AFP news agency that it will reduce the delivery of vaccines at the end of this month to make adjustments in its European production and thus be able to supply more doses after that.
“Although this will temporarily affect shipments temporarily, it will allow a significant increase in the doses available to patients at the end of February and March,” the pharmaceutical reported.
It is not yet known whether this will affect the deliveries agreed to for Costa Rica, given the country receives the doses from Europe.
At the moment, the country has the best vaccination rate in Latin America, according to the Our World in Data database from the University of Oxford.
As of last Friday, the Caja Costarricense de Seguro Social (CCSS) reported 24,859 vaccines against Covid-19 applied. This corresponds to a rate of 0.49 doses per 100 inhabitants and is the highest figure in the region, followed by Argentina, with a rate of 0.44.
“It is an error that we think that the vaccination rate for the year will be the same as we are having at the moment, because it is currently a single source. When the different sources are incorporated, such as Covax and AstraZeneca, the dynamics will increase significantly ”, highlighted Esteban Vega de la O, manager of Logistics at the Caja.
The CCCSS has a vaccination capacity of 300,000 doses or more per week; however, at this time this dynamic is dependent on the number of doses received weekly.
Costa Rica received the first batch of 9,750 doses of the Pfizer/Biontech vaccine on December 23, followed up with a batch of 11,750 doses on December 30, the third of 33,150 doses on January 5 and the fourth of 33,150 doses on January 12. Following that schedule the fifth batch is expected either today, January 19 or tomorrow.
“Although the entry of the vaccine occurs weekly in relatively small quantities, arrivals have been constant and progressive, thanks to this we will be successfully reaching the first group. It is a mistake that we think that the vaccination rate for the year will be the same as we are having at this time,” Vega reiterated.
Vaccine application in the region:
According to the Our World in Data database from the University of Oxford. that analyzed data from January 15 to 17, Costa Rica leads the rate of application of vaccines against Covid-19 per 100 inhabitants:
- Costa Rica 0.49 to January 15
- Argentina 0.44 to January 15
- Mexico 0.37 to January 17
- Brazil 0.01 to January 17
- Chile 0.01 to January 14