First COVAX vaccines against COVID-19 would arrive in Latin America in mid-February

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Editorial Dept. Voz de la Diaspora

Latin America is getting ready to receive the first shipments of vaccines against COVID-19 from the COVAX and GAVI mechanism, the Vaccine Alliance to ensure equitable access among countries.

The Pan American Health Organization (OPS) explained that 36 Countries and territories that are part of the COVAX coalition were informed about the number of doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine they could receive from the second half of February, and throughout the second quarter of 2021.

In the first stage they would arrive around 35,3 million doses of AstraZeneca vaccine to the Americas region that will require immunization of approximately 500 millions of people to control the pandemic, according to the PAHO statement.

Through the COVAX mechanism, led by the World Health Organization (WHO) It seeks to accelerate equitable access to vaccines against COVID-19 with the goal of supplying vaccines to at least the 20% of the inhabitants of each participating country aimed at the most vulnerable populations.

In Latin America and the Caribbean, 37 countries will receive vaccines through the COVAX mechanism, of which 27 They will do it with their own financing and 10 they will do it at no cost due to their economic condition or the size of their population.

The Director of PAHO, doctora Carissa F. Etienne said that with more than 45 million confirmed cases and more than one million deaths, countries and territories throughout the Americas, and in particular the poorest, "They are going through a health crisis, unprecedented economic and social ".

Hence, the start of the delivery of vaccines through the COVAX mechanism "... is a hopeful step in the fight against this virus ...", he added.

Countries that would receive the first vaccines include Belize, Bermuda, Bolivia, Brazil, Glen, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominica, Ecuador, The Savior, Haiti, Guatemala, Guyana, Honduras, Jamaica, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Dominican Republic, Uruguay and Venezuela.

First wave

PAHO explained that the countries that are part of the COVAX mechanism were also invited to submit proposals for the "First Wave" initiative., a global pilot program that will allow them to receive in advance a limited number of doses of the Pfizer / BioNTech vaccine within their total allotted quota.

Of the 72 requests sent by countries around the world, a special committee selected 18 beneficiary countries, including four Latin Americans, Bolivia, Colombia, El Salvador and Peru.

These four nations will receive 377,910 from Pfizer / BioNTech and expected to arrive from mid-February, subject to the establishment of the UNICEF and PAHO supply agreements with the producer, as reported by COVAX.