Cuba to Apply Second Reinforcement of Anti-Covid-19 Vaccination to People 50 Years or Older

Cuba to Apply Second Reinforcement of Anti-Covid-19 Vaccination to People 50 Years or Older
Fecha de publicación: 
18 May 2022
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The Public Health Ministry, after finishing the analysis together with several entities in this regard, made the decision to allocate the second anti-Covid-19 vaccination reinforcement, to people 50 years old and older, previously conceived rank since age 70.


This was known on Tuesday, from the Palace of the Revolution by Dr. Ileana Morales Suárez, director of Technological Science and Innovation of the Ministry of Public Health (Minsap), in the meeting of experts and scientists engaged in science and technological innovation tasks for the confrontation of COVID-19, other relevant issues for Cuba were also addressed.


With this new age ranking, a little more than four million of people will have the reinforcement dose administered, according to Dr. Ileana Morales at the meeting headed by the first secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party and President of the Republic, Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez; as well as for the member of the political bureau and prime minister, Manuel Marrero Cruz, and the vice prime ministers, Inés María Chapman Waugh, and Jorge Luis Perdomo Di-Lella.


Morales stated that this weekend the reinforcement doses will also begin to be administered to risk groups. On the scope of this process, Díaz-Canel commented that "now our success to keep" the encouraging figures lies in "maintaining the level of immunization we have, which has to be on the basis of reinforcements."


He shared the idea according to the evidence that, if the world can’t eliminate the situation of the epidemic, "we will still be exposed": "That is, we cannot lose the systematic reinforcement because, otherwise, we’ll return to a complex situation ».


Data that illustrate the situation of humanity before the COVID-19, and how much the island has achieved in its confrontation to the pandemic were part of the update on the anti-Covid-19 vaccination strategy in Cuba. Morales Suárez preferred to start with inequities, because, she said, "when you take a look at the line of low-income countries, against what those of high income have achieved, the differences are huge."


A graphic served as support to speak on the number of people who have not been vaccinated in the world. When pointing on a colored map how the planet has been whipped by the omicron variant, the doctor said that if the world was vaccinated as the island and other countries are, the gigantic peak of the disease had not happened.


The reality is far from the previous evidence, and it’s sad: only 14 countries had more than 85 % of its population vaccinated; about thirty nations have less than 10 % in that health condition; and there are 42 countries that have less than 20 %. Another fact shared speaks of the inequality: 95 countries - the total of 194 of the world - have less than 50 % of their population vaccinated.


All Cubans are very proud, he argued that the island leads the list of countries according to the amount of vaccines that are administered every hundred people":" We lead that figure a long time ago, but what catches our attention the most, "she added - is the difference we have against the world average ». The world average, she emphasized, does not reach 148, while Cuba has a figure that exceeds 320.


«In terms of mortality, we are already at the minimum possible, which was what Professor Guinovart predicted about six months ago». She showed a sheet that "is one of those we like the most, the ones we feel most satisfied with," according to which pediatric vaccination has reached 1,909,980 children in Cuba (97.8% of the total).


A little over 1,954,000 children had to be vaccinated: that number of those who have not been vaccinated represents sick children, or who have presented some health condition. Already the reinforcement dose in this group of the population, detailed the doctor, "reaches the 61.3%".


As for the millions of doses administered throughout the country, the expert recalled that administering 36.3 million in one year has been a great effort, and we continue, she stated. "We want to continue protecting the Cuban population, like you (she addressed the President) have repeatedly indicated."


An extensive information at the meeting was offered by the doctor of Sciences Pedro Mas Bermejo, which dealt with the study of the effectiveness of Abdala vaccine in the pediatric population of Cuba. The also vice president of the Cuban Society of Hygiene and Epidemiology, said that "since July last year we’ve been doing the evaluation, and here are the results": 94% effective for severe disease; and 93.69% for death. These are results, he asserted, thanks to which the number of deaths decreased greatly.


Regarding the effectiveness of Abdala vaccine in the prevention of asymptomatic disease, in patients between ages 16-18, the percentage is 98.9. That effectiveness is "very high," said the expert.


For all the effort Cuba has made to save lives against COVID-19, this Tuesday the doctor of Sciences Raúl Guinovart Díaz, dean of the Faculty of Mathematics and Computing at the University of Havana, was able to affirm, based on forecasts models, that what’s expected is that the epidemic remains under control in the country during the coming weeks.




More than once, President Díaz-Canel asked about the families that have been severely hit by the Saratoga Hotel incident, on May 6th. He did so during the meeting of the temporary work group for the prevention and confrontation of COVID-19, in which follow-up was given to victims of the explosion at the tourism facility in Old Havana.


At the meeting – attended by Prime Minister Manuel Marrero Cruz, as well as the Army General of the Revolutionary Armed Forces (FAR) and Hero of the Republic of Cuba, Ramón Espinosa Martín-, a review was detail, to how the affected families are being cared for.


The Minister of Foreign Trade and Foreign Investment, Rodrigo Malmierca Díaz, reported that the offers made these days by international institutions are basically goods for those affected and resources for Public Health (including medicines and medical supplies): "There are donations from institutions from the United Nations system, foreign companies, and associations of Cubans residing abroad," said the minister, who also mentioned Cuban entities.


The Governor of Havana, Reinaldo García Zapata, announced that he has completed the survey of the needs of all the families who are housed at Villa Panamericana. “We have already raised the specific effects that each of these families had.” And he added: "We are reviewing all the families of the deceased, because the situation is quite delicate in some, because many of the deceased were the support of their families."


As described by García Zapata, several task forces are  working at the same time: the belongings of the families that had to be evacuated are being transferred; reconstruction work continues on the houses, on the affected school, as well as on the Capitol, and on Martí Theater.


The Head of State was interested in the people who receive pension treatment as a result of the Saratoga events. In this regard, Marta Elena Feitó Cabrera, Minister of Labor and Social Security, explained that all pensions are being processed, service times are being reviewed, and provisional pensions have been put in place, in order to save time, while the official paper work I under way. To the 22 families staying at Villa Panamericana, she added, a Social Assistance benefit has been given to them.


The head of MINSAP, José Angel Portal Miranda – who, when addressing the figures on COVID-19, stated that the incidence levels of transmission continue to decrease – said, regarding the part of those affected by the hotel incident that, of the 99 who were injured, the number of deceased remains (46). There are 41 medical discharges. There are 12 hospitalized patients (one in critical conditions). There are four in serious condition (two children included), and there are seven delicate patients (two children also included). In the case of adults, there’s one in critical state. In the case of children, none is critical, and the Spanish patient continues to evolve favorably.


Through videoconference, authorities from each province and Isla de la Juventud special municipality informed the country's leadership about the situation of COVID-19 and other priority issues for life.

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