President Nayib Bukele confirmed on Monday that the Salvadoran government will donate vaccines against COVID-19 to immunize the residents of seven municipalities in Honduras after a public request made by the mayors of that country.
Bukele posted on Twitter that the Salvadoran Minister of Health, Francisco Alabí, would receive the seven Hondurans who asked for support on Tuesday afternoon and that the donated vaccines would serve to immunize the population most at risk in that country.
Previously, the mayor of the municipality of San José Colinas, Amable de Jesús Hernández, said in a video that the help was urgent for Honduras because “our population is dying from COVID, our government does not respond, so we come to you.”
“There are many infected and when we cannot find support in our country, we turn to your good will, to support us and help us so that our people do not continue to die and thus be able to get vaccinated if you support us,” added José Luis Chirinoso, mayor of the municipality of Manto.
The Salvadoran president assured that the doses that will be donated to Hondurans would not affect the rate of vaccination in El Salvador, “which is at the maximum of our human capacity. The scheduled shipments of vaccines that we will receive leave us a sufficiently wide margin to donate some”.
Later, Minister Alabí confirmed the meeting with the Honduran mayors to find out the total population at risk, suffering from chronic diseases or over 60 years of age. He explained that he requested information on the cold chain that Honduras would be able to provide to protect or not the doses that require low or deep freezing.
El Salvador has received through the COVAX mechanism – created under the support of organizations such as the World Health Organization to guarantee equitable access to immunization – vaccines from AstraZeneca and Pfizer, but it has also bought doses of AstraZeneca and Sinovac. China donated 150,000 doses of the second to El Salvador.
“We do not have any conditions to help Honduras, the most important thing is to bring the vaccine to Hondurans, for those groups of greater vulnerability of the seven municipalities that have asked us for help,” said Alabí.
The Ministry of Health previously reported that it has more than 1.8 million doses and that the arrival of new batches is expected in the coming days. Recently, El Salvador signed an agreement with the pharmaceutical company Pfizer for the supply of 4.4 million vaccines.
El Salvador has applied the first dose to 1.1 million people, including doctors and health personnel, soldiers, police, teachers and administrative personnel of public and private schools and universities. More than 155 thousand people have already received the second dose of the vaccine.
So far the Central American country has registered 70,380 infections and 2,305 deaths from COVID-19 and 65,921 people have overcome the condition.
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