Chile becomes first South American country to approve Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine

pfizer vaccine

Chilean health regulator Instituto de Salud Pública (ISP) unanimously approved the emergency use of the Covid-19 vaccine developed by Pfizer and BioNTech, which was expected after the vaccine was approved by regulators in the U.S. 

Chile is now the first South American country to approve the vaccine, after Mexico became the pioneers in Latin America last week. According to newspaper La Tercera, vaccination in Chile could start on Christmas Eve, as the first 30,000 doses will be sent from Miami on December 23. The campaign is likely to start in the hardest-hit areas, such as Greater Santiago, Biobío, La Araucanía, and Magallanes.

Chilean media reports that the first people to receive the vaccine will be health professionals, followed by senior citizens and patients with chronic illnesses, though further studies will be required to grant its safety for some groups. 

In order to transport the vaccines at -70ºC, the Chilean government decided to add 23kg of dry ice to each box. The country also has three deep freezers able to keep the substance at ultra-low temperatures.

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