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Peru begins COVID-19 vaccination of healthcare workers

Xinhua | Updated: 2021-02-10 11:22
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A health worker prepares a dose of the Sinopharm's coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine, in Lima, Peru, Feb 9, 2021. [Photo/Agencies]

LIMA - Peru launched the first stage of its national vaccination campaign against the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) on Tuesday, using vaccines developed by Chinese company Sinopharm to immunize healthcare workers.

The head of Intensive Care and Intermediate Care Service at the Arzobispo Loayza Hospital in Lima, Josef Vallejos Acevedo, said he was very pleased to have been among the first group of doctors to receive the vaccine at the institution.

"Very pleased, knowing that it marks a historic day in Peruvian medicine, especially in this preventive part in the fight against this disease that has hit us so hard," the specialist said in an interview with local radio.

A group of doctors at the hospital were symbolically chosen to start the immunization process, with which the government aims to stop the further spread of the disease, said Vallejos.

"Except for the slight jab they give you in the shoulder, no more than that, there is no specific symptom, no dizziness or pain or anything," he added.

The vaccination drive against COVID-19 has been divided into three stages, the first aimed at attending to healthcare workers, a segment that has seen 302 doctors die of the disease and 12,465 come down with COVID-19, including 50 currently in intensive care units.

The second stage will attend to people with comorbidity and those over 60 years of age, while the third will target people between the ages of 18 and 59.

Peru is currently facing a second wave of infections, which the government considers to be more aggressive than the first wave.

Peru has registered a total of 1,191,221 cases of COVID-19 and 42,467 deaths from the disease since the onset of the outbreak here in March.

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