Coronavirus vaccine to be available in Mérida after Easter weekend

Yucatán's coronavirus vaccination program finally puts Mérida on its timeline. Photo: Courtesy
Yucatán’s coronavirus vaccination program finally puts Mérida on its timeline. Photo: Courtesy

Mérida residents finally get to line up for their coronavirus vaccinations, starting with people 60 and over, just after Easter weekend.

A local politician had announced that shots would actually begin during the weekend, but state authorities since said the campaign would reach the capital city on April 5.

Yucatán’s vaccination program has been carried out in smaller municipalities for weeks, but not so far in the state’s capital and largest population center. Politicians have said that since shots are distributed town to town, health officials needed a larger supply of the vaccine to cover the city of around 130,000 people who qualify for the vaccine.

More than 28,000 doses, around 14,000 each of Pfizer and Sinovac vaccines, arrived Friday.

Foreigners with immigration cards, and in the right age group, are among those who qualify, although gatekeepers in several districts have wrongly insisted on voter ID cards for pass through. That is why expats with residency status should also bring a utility bill that connects their name and street address to clarify that they live in the town being served. Several have flown to their home states just to get the vaccination.

Foreigners here on a tourist visa do not qualify, and the vaccine is so far not available through private channels.

Vaccination points in Mérida will be published next week.

The first COVID-19 vaccines arrived in Yucatán on Jan. 12. Those 9,750 doses of Pfizer vaccines went to front-line health personnel.

On Feb. 15, 15,630 doses of AstraZeneca were the first vaccines for older adults, but only those living in Valladolid, Motul and Conkal.

Since then, people over 60 in Umán, Kaua, Progreso, Tixkokob, Temozón, Espita, Ticul, Tizimín, Maxcanú, Tekax, Peto, Izamal, Tinum, Oxkutzcab, Hunucmá, Chemax, Acanceh, Buctzotz, Chichimilá, San Felipe and Kanasín have also been vaccinated.

Lee Steele

Lee Steele is the founding director of Roof Cat Media and has published Yucatán Magazine and other titles since 2012.