Young Bolivians over 18 flocked to vaccination centers this Thursday to get the first dose of the Covid-19 vaccine after the government widened the age range for the population decline the day before. .
Long lines and enthusiasm were reported at vaccination centers in all capital cities. In Santa Cruz and Tarija, authorities reported that the doses were about to run out.
There were long lines of young people in several cities across the country getting excited about being able to use the vaccine, however, in some centers, lack of doses was reported due to demand from people who came for the vaccine.
The vaccination for the over 18 year olds was possible this morning from noon, but many of them were already in line from 5:00 a.m.
In the ranks, the presence of so many people between the ages of 18 and 29 is striking, while most of them have documented their experiences on their social networks or with selfies and the calm it creates to get vaccinated against Covid-19 and resume their plans such as travel for tourism or study.
Interior Minister for Human Development Fernando Pacheco called on the central government to accelerate the arrival of new batches of vaccine for the population aged 18-29. Santa Cruz has 6,000 vaccines (first doses) and Pacheco’s expectation would be exhausted this afternoon, according to El Deber.
Santa Cruz has the capacity to vaccinate 22,000 people a day. There are more than 200 vaccination centers in total.
In the case of the department of Tarija, the director of the health service of the department (headquarters) of Tarija asked Inlvaro Justiniano not to collapse the vaccination stations as the region still does not have the necessary doses of anticovid to start the campaign.
“We ask you not to leave or collapse the lines that are normally used in vaccination centers as there are no biologics (vaccines) available at the moment,” he said, according to La Voz de Tarija.
In Cochabamba, vaccination has opened in five major centers and more than 200 first and second level hospitals.
Hundreds of young people packed various vaccination sites in La Paz, Cochabamba and Santa Cruz.
A 20 year old girl in La Paz couldn’t hide her joy and said that she and her friends teamed up to get vaccinated because it was a “duty” and that the lines didn’t matter, the “important thing.” “The thing was, it’s the only way to reduce contagion.
This Wednesday evening, the President of Bolivia, Luis Arce, announced in a message to the country that in view of a possible fourth wave of the pandemic and the contagion of the new strains in the youngest, the vaccination schedule had been extended to those over 18 years of age.
The president confirmed that this new measure will be guaranteed with the arrival of “more than eight million vaccines” over the next three months and that his government plans to vaccinate at least 96% of the country’s vaccinable population.
Bolivia currently has at least four million vaccines between Sinopharm, Russia’s Sputnik V, and those donated by the United Nations COVAX mechanism, i.e. Oxford-AstraZeneca and Pfizer.
There have been 439,624 Covid-19 infections and 16,767 deaths in Bolivia as of March 2020.