President Piñera receives more than 11,000 new COVID-19 vaccines: “They will enable us to give peace of mind and protect the health and lives of the Chilean people, who are now feeling hopeful”
The second shipment of doses against Coronavirus will be used to continue the vaccination of healthcare personnel who work in Intensive Care Units. The vaccines will be sent to the Tarapacá, Valparaíso, Maule, Los Ríos and Los Lagos Regions.
The President of Chile, Sebastián Piñera, received the second shipment of 11,700 COVID-19 vaccines that arrived in Chile on Thursday.
“They will enable us to give peace of mind and protect the health and lives of the Chilean people, who are now feeling hopeful,” remarked the President. He was speaking at Santiago Airport, where he was accompanied by Health Minister Enrique Paris and Foreign Affairs Minister Andrés Allamand.
Departing from Puurs, Belgium, the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines had a technical stopover in the United States before beginning the final leg to Santiago.
These 11,700 new doses will be booster shots for those who received the vaccine first, all of whom work in Intensive Care Units in the Bio Bío, La Araucanía, Magallanes and Metropolitan Regions. First doses will also be given to healthcare workers in the Tarapacá, Valparaíso, Maule, Los Ríos and Los Lagos Regions.
The President also announced that the capacity to maintain the cold chain for the vaccines, which need to be stored at -70°C, has been increased from 380,000 to more than 600,000 doses with new ultrafreezers that are already in operation.
The first shipment of around 10,000 doses of the vaccine arrived in Chile on December 24.
Over the coming weeks, new shipments of vaccines are expected to expand the vaccination plan to cover more Chileans, including personnel deployed in response to the COVID emergency, senior citizens, the chronically ill and other risk groups.
The aim is to vaccinate 5 million people in the risk groups in the first quarter and 15 million Chileans in the first six months of 2021.
“This process will not cease. It will be ongoing until we have vaccinated everyone who wants to be vaccinated in Chile,” said the President.