Chilean health authorities Thursday announced a fourth dose of COVID-19 vaccine is to be administered to people over 60 years old, while a survey has shown an overwhelming support for mandatory vaccination at workplaces.
Health Minister Enrique Paris explained yet another booster dose was to be given as of February 15 to older adults and health-care staff. I understand that President Sebastián Piñera discussed it with President-elect, Gabriel Boric. We are preparing to start in February and continue in March when there is a change of government because it is happening all over the world that antibodies fall in the sixth month, he said.
Paris stressed that for the fourth vaccination campaign the heterologous (different brands) scheme will continue. The combination of immunizers from multiple laboratories has been proven to be effective in countries such as Argentina. Chile uses Sinovac, Pfizer, AstraZeneca and CanSino.
Starting next January 1, the third dose will be required of all Chileans over 18 years of age to be able to use their vaccination card, a mandatory government pass required for large scale events and to enter bars and restaurants.
Chile has confirmed 1.9 million COVID-19 infections and 38,954 deaths from the disease.
Meanwhile, a survey conducted by Ipsos released Thursday has shown over 80% of Chileans favored compulsory vaccination at work. In the study titled Covid and the workplace which included over 14,000 people in 33 countries- it was found that 88% of Chileans were in favor of compulsory vaccination at the workplace and 11% even warned they were willing to resign if their workmates were not forced into taking measures to fight COVID-19. While vaccination is not mandatory, 84% agree that non-vaccinated workers be subjected to frequent tests for the disease. At the same time, 92% of Chileans agreed to wearing face masks in common areas and in the proximity to other people. Only 2% of all respondents mentioned that they would quit their job in the event that vaccination or testing is mandatory.
The study also found that before the pandemic 84% of Chileans worked outside the home, while today it is of 60%.