Cuba to vaccinate children and adolescents aged 2 to 18 against Covid-19

In its fight against the spread of the coronavirus, Cuba has decided to vaccinate children. From Friday, children and adolescents from 2 to 18 years old will receive the Cuban vaccines Abadala and Soberana. It is even a condition set by the government before reopening schools, according to the official announcement Wednesday. In the meantime, the start of the school year will take place on Monday, September 6, but at a distance.

This pediatric vaccination campaign is part of the government’s strategy to accelerate the immunization of its lagging population. While targeting 70% of Cubans vaccinated at the end of August, the country currently has only 33.8%, which has prompted it to start using the Chinese vaccine Sinopharm, in addition to its homemade vaccines. The new target is that “92.6%” of the 11.2 million inhabitants are vaccinated in November, assures the presidency on Wednesday on its web page.

An “intensive” campaign

Adolescents will begin to be vaccinated on Friday, then those aged 2 to 11 from September 15, as part of a campaign that will be “intensive, with many people vaccinated in a short time,” said the director of the department. Science and innovation at the Ministry of Health, Ileana Morales, cited by the presidency.

Cuba is currently conducting clinical trials on children with its Abdala and Soberana vaccines, already used in people over 18, but neither has yet received authorization for emergency use for minors. However, “this vaccination campaign has been authorized by the State Drug Control Center (Cecmed)”, the regulatory authority, assumes the presidency.

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The Delta variant has been attacking since July

Cuba, which had succeeded in controlling the epidemic on its territory the first times, has posted very worrying contagion figures since July, the arrival of the Delta variant rocking its health system, pride and social pillar of the island. The country of 11.2 million inhabitants has accumulated 659,464 cases, including 5,377 deaths. By early August, 95,100 Cuban minors had contracted Covid-19 and seven died from it.

Elsewhere in the world, many countries vaccinate from the age of 12, but several clinical trials in younger children are underway. In China, the Sinovac laboratory has announced that it is preparing to vaccinate from the age of three against the coronavirus, while in Israel, children aged 5 to 11 at risk of serious complications from Covid-19 can be vaccinated since August 1st.

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