Moscow, Dec 2 (Agency) – Uruguay plans to start vaccinations against the coronavirus disease in April 2021, President Luis Lacalle Pou has said, adding that the vaccination will not be obligatory. “We have a reasonable date which is the beginning of the second quarter of the next year, sometime in April… the vaccination horizon is on that date,” the president said at a press conference on Tuesday.
Lacalle Pou added that the vaccination plan covers the first 700,000 doses and then another 500,000 doses. “We are now deciding which vaccine we will purchase, but the Russian vaccine is on the list of vaccines we are considering, it has a good position, we will see,” the minister said at a press conference after the meeting. At the press conference, the president also announced a series of new restrictive measures due to the surge in the new COVID-19 positive cases in the country. “The remote work in all public offices, the cancellation of all indoor sports including basketball, the closure of bars and restaurants will be at 00:00 [06:00 GMT] and fines will be applied to workplaces that do not comply with protocols,” the president said. The government will evaluate the effectiveness of these measures from December 2 to 18 and may announce new restrictive steps. Since the beginning of the pandemic, Uruguay has registered 6,024 positive cases, including 4,483 patients who have recovered and 78 people who have died.
On October 13, the Uruguayan government announced that the country will join the COVAX Facility, a World Health Organization initiative to guarantee an equitable distribution of eventual COVID-19 vaccines, that will allow to purchase 1.5 million doses amounting to $2.5 million. On Tuesday, after the meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, Uruguayan Foreign Minister Francisco Bustillo said the Uruguayan government considered a potential purchase of Russian vaccine against COVID-19.