PAHO responds if senior officials should be vaccinated first

Should a country first vaccinate against covid-19 to its politicians and senior civil and military officials? Judging by the recommendations of the Pan American Health Organization (OPS), not necessarily.

Consulted on the subject during a talk with users of social networks, the deputy director of the OPS, Jarbas Barbosa, clearly outlined the priorities for the anticovid vaccination recommended by the agency, regional entity of the World Health Organization (WHO).

He said they must first be immunized healthcare professionals, « Because they are the most exposed », as well as workers in contact with older adults and in « key social areas for the country. »

He added that afterwards they must seek to « save lives, » protecting « those who are more likely to develop serious forms (of the disease) and die from covid-19«. In this group he placed the elderly and adults with chronic diseases.

« Those should be the priorities, that is the recommendation of the WHO and PAHO, » said Barbosa.

He did not mention in particular any public office. But he stressed that WHO / PAHO limits itself to advising on the priority groupsBut it is the countries that make the final decision.

“Countries have a sovereign decision on how their vaccination strategy«, He emphasized.

When detailing the aspects that a national vaccination plan, Barbosa highlighted the need to address various dimensions.

This includes from the review of the regulatory processes and of import of vaccines to the evaluation of the cold chain to preserve the doses, the training of the personnel who must administer the vaccine and the design of a communication strategy to the population, clarifying which vaccines are to be used and what degree of efficacy and safety they have demonstrated to have.