Cuba is proud that it now has the highest coronavirus vaccination rate in Latin America, despite a crippling six-decade US blockade, Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez announced, “applying around 200,000 daily doses on average.”
Cuba has also begun commercial exports of its home grown virus vaccines, sending shipments of the three-dose Abdala vaccine to Vietnam and Venezuela.
Cuba President Miguel Diaz-Canel announced the arrival of vaccines in Vietnam on his Twitter feed. The shipment included 900,000 doses bought by Hanoi and 150,000 more donated by Cuba.
Ministry of Health statistics show that more than nine million of Cuba’s 11 million population have received at least one dose. More than six million people have received two doses while 44 percent of the population is fully vaccinated, which in Cuba requires three doses.
The government attributed the success to Cuba’s socialist economy and advanced biotechnology industry, which has enabled it to produce its own supplies.
Cuba has largely used its own vaccines, Soberana 02 and Abdala, as part of its programme. This has been supplemented with China’s Sinopharm in some regions.
More than 7,000 people have died from coronavirus since the outbreak of the global pandemic in Cuba. Its mortality rate of 0.84 per cent is significantly lower than the global average of 2.05 per cent.