A third of Chile’s 19 million inhabitants will be completely reconfigured from Thursday, despite the rapid progress of the vaccination campaign in this country at the forefront in Latin America in the fight against COVID-19, announced Monday the authorities.
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“We are very concerned about the progress and behavior of the virus and we are observing a persistent increase in the number of cases in recent days,” said Minister of Health Enrique Paris.
As of Monday, 5,117 new cases, including 98 fatalities, were recorded (896,231 cases and 21,772 deaths in total). Previously, Chile had only exceeded 5,000 daily cases for five consecutive days in June 2020, at the height of the first wave.
As a result, nine of the 52 municipalities of the agglomeration of Santiago and 20 others throughout Chile, or a third of the 19 million inhabitants, will be confined as of Thursday.
The durations and levels of restrictions will be assessed according to the evolution of the number of additional contaminations.
These new measures are in addition to the confinement imposed on the weekend on the entire Santiago metropolitan region (7.1 million inhabitants) decided last week.
Yet Chile is the most advanced country in Latin America in vaccination.
According to official data, 4.8 million people have been vaccinated, and the Minister of Health has estimated that 15 million of his compatriots will be vaccinated by June 30.
Vaccination of health personnel began on December 24, and since February 3, the entire population has been called upon to be vaccinated.