The Pan American Health Organization (PAHO / WHO) reported on January 1st that El Salvador is one of the four nations in Latin America that will receive the COVID-19 vaccine in the first round and through the COVAX program.
The COVAX program is a global initiative that aims to ensure that low-income countries have fast and equitable access to vaccines against COVID-19. The organization selected Eighteen countries on the COVAX list to receive the first wave of COVID-19 vaccines.
According to the news release, seventy-two countries worldwide submitted a request for the COVAX program. Each nation applying had to show evidence of readiness to use the vaccine that requires ultra-low freezing temperatures.
An independent committee evaluated all the applications; they review the criteria for the risks and impact of the pandemic, the mortality rates of the last few weeks, and the number of doses available. Furthermore, they evaluated the country’s readiness to use the vaccine immediately.
In addition to El Salvador, Bolivia, Colombia, and Peru are the Latin American countries selected to participate in the first round of vaccine distribution. It is expected that the nations chosen will receive the vaccines throughout February.
According to the information provided, it would be the Pfizer / BioNTech vaccine that El Salvador and the other three countries will receive.
in the press release, The Pan American Health Organization congratulated the Salvadoran government for its efforts in managing the pandemic. “We join in congratulating the Health Authorities of the Government of El Salvador for this important achievement.”
President Nayib Bukele announced that health personal would be the priority for vaccination; it will be followed by the elderly and those with chronic diseases.
The COVAX program aims to deliver 1.3 billion doses of approved vaccines to 92 eligible low- and middle-income countries by 2021. However, it faces potential delays amid a global fight for vaccines in different countries.