LA PAZ, Bolivia ( Associated Press) — The Bolivian government announced on Wednesday that it will promote vaccination against COVID-19 with mobile brigades in schools due to low immunization among children and youth amid a rise in infections.
“There is no increase in vaccination and efforts must be doubled, so this is the great crusade for vaccination,” Health Minister Jason Ouza told the media.
A day earlier, representatives from nine regions of the Andean nation met and agreed on an action plan to tackle the disease as the country goes through a fifth wave and experts predict the highest peak of infections will occur at the end of July .
According to the records of the Ministry of Health, daily infection cases reached 3,011 last week, while 5,733 cases were registered on Tuesday.
Ouza explained that new forms of the disease are already spreading in Bolivia and are thought to be more contagious in vulnerable populations.
Vaccination varies among children and youth in the nine regions. In children aged 11 to 5 years, it has not yet reached 50% and the closest (41.1%) to that percentage of immunized individuals is the highland region of Oruro. According to health officials, among people below the age of 17 to 11 years, 53% of vaccinations were done in the same department.
School children are on leave and are expected to return to class on Monday. However, the parents have sought extension of the holiday for another week to avoid infection. The Ministry of Education analyzes this possibility.
Ouza recommended that vaccination brigades be ready for return to classes. Among other measures, it was ordered that street brigades conduct rapid tests to detect the disease.