This Wednesday at 9:04 p.m., the DHL flight from Belgium with a stopover in Miami lands at Juan Santamaría airport, with the second delivery of 11,700 doses of the vaccine against covid-19.
Dr. Esteban Vega de La O, Logistics Manager a.i. of the Costa Rican Social Security Fund (CCSS) reported that once the vaccines are received, they will be transferred to the institution’s facilities where they will be kept while they are distributed to health facilities.
The vaccines are packed in 3 boxes, two with 5 trays each for 9750 doses, a third box with two trays for 1,950 additional doses, kept at a temperature minus 70 degrees, which is kept during transport until they are placed in a freezer. explained the Logistics manager.
These 11,700 doses will allow the vaccination of 5,850 more people in the first risk group, made up of first responders and elderly residents of long-stay homes.
The CCSS has gradually started the vaccination of its officials in five hospital centers, starting with the personnel of the different occupational profiles who provide direct care to covid-19 patients. In the same way, in five health areas the application began to the elderly population residing in long-stay homes.
Dr. Daniel Salas, Minister of Health, said that “a new delivery of vaccines so that, through the Costa Rican Social Security Fund, we can continue and enhance the vaccination process that has already begun. However, the permanent reminder not to abandon self-care and prevention measures against covid-19, given that the path to herd immunity will require months, and during this time it is vital not to faint in health protocols.
For his part, Dr. Vega de La O stated that “vaccination is the light at the end of the tunnel but there is still a long way to go and obstacles to overcome as a society, and for this, compliance with the care measures until collective immunity and protection of risk groups is achieved during the year with a sustained vaccination ”.
Vega de La O indicated that successively each week will enter a number of doses according to the agreed deliveries, for January an estimated 33,150, which will allow the country to receive 132,000 doses that will protect 66,300 people by the end of this month.
The CCSS has planned through the Logistics Management the routes that will allow little by little to take the vaccine to each of the parts of the country and protect the population. Dr. Leandra Abarca, coordinator of the Immunization Program, reiterated that the process will be gradual and as the vaccination of a risk group is concluded, the next one will continue, in the order established by the National Immunization Commission.
Costa Rica has signed contracts to purchase six million doses of the vaccine through three suppliers: Pfizer-BioNTech (three million doses), AstraZeneca-Oxford (one million doses) and the COVAX initiative of the World Health Organization ( two million doses). These six million doses will benefit three million people and will be placed by CCSS officials throughout 2021.