The National Vaccination and Epidemiology Commission (CNVE), the body in charge of setting national guidelines for the covid-19 immunisation campaign and chaired by the Ministry of Health, defined that 80% of all doses arriving at health facilities will be used to vaccinate people in the second group and 20% for those in the first group, as appropriate.
The distribution of vaccines with this criterion will begin in February, once the arrival of Pfizer’s biologic has been reactivated, and it is clarified that the measure contemplates the necessary reserve for the second doses, a fundamental fact to guarantee the maximum possible immunisation, according to the manufacturer’s protocol.
The expected effect of this arrangement is to move more quickly on the second prioritisation group – those over 58 years of age – with cascade programming by age, i.e. older people are vaccinated first, followed by younger people.
Vaccination in the communities will start progressively from February and reach the whole country later, as the pace of progress depends on the number of vaccines arriving in the country each week, as indicated by the national authorities in charge of importing the medicine.
In view of the new provisions, the Expanded Programme of Immunisation of the Costa Rican Social Security Fund (CCSS) requests Costa Ricans over 58 years of age and foreigners with resident status without a record in the institution to register in the ebáis of their community in order to place them in the appropriate prioritisation by age.
Similarly, policyholders with recently used telephone numbers are advised to update their details via the EDUS application, so that they can be called and receive information on when, where and how their vaccination will take place.
The director of the Health Services Directorate of the CCSS, Dr. Mario Mora Ulloa, clarifies that some health areas will advance faster than others because they have smaller population groups of older adults.
However, although progress varies according to the characteristics of the communities, the director assures citizens that there is clear and well-publicised planning and instruction to ensure that vaccination compliance is faithfully observed in each of the health facilities.
Dr. Mora calls on people to agree to be vaccinated, as scientific evidence shows an effectiveness of protection of more than 90%.
“If you don’t get the vaccine, you may get covid-19 and you know a maxim that has been proven in this pandemic: the older you are, the greater the risk of complication and death for the person,” the doctor said.