“The number of new confirmed cases is up 30% and 82% over the past seven and fourteen days, respectively,” confirmed Health Minister Enrique Paris during the daily COVID-19 update.
At the national level, only one region lowered its number of cases over the past seven days and two regions have done so over the past fourteen. The regions with the highest increases in confirmed cases over the past seven days are Magallanes, Coquimbo, Los Ríos and Los Lagos.
Minister Paris informed that “76% of last week’s confirmed cases were under the age of 49.”
He also reported that the Metropolitan Region “has the highest case rate, 69 for every 100,000 inhabitants, followed by Arica and Parinacota, Antofagasta and Maule.” The national case rate is now 31 for every 100,000 inhabitants.
“We have reported a significant increase in cases over the past week, exceeding 2,000 cases per day on some days. The situation in the Metropolitan Region concerns us once more. On some days, the PCR positivity rate has been over 3%,” Minster Paris said.
He also stated that “this increase in cases is not only being seen in Chile, but also in other South American countries and parts of Europe.” In this context, Minister Paris urged health measures to continue, including washing hands, wearing masks, ventilating closed spaces and social distancing.
“Last week, we held an open forum with more than 200 social leaders who were trained as part of the Cuadrilla Sanitaria en tu Barrio (Health Squad in your Neighborhood), a program aimed at increasing communication on risk according to the local realities in different places throughout Chile,” Health Undersecretary Paula Daza explained.
Undersecretary Daza continued, “although the systematized results won’t be in until next week, one of the squads’ concerns was how to encourage and motivate neighbors, friends and family to get vaccinated with the booster dose. This issue also concerns us as a government, because more than 1,251,375 people over the age of 55 who completed their vaccination scheme before June 13 have still not received their booster dose.”
Based on this information, Undersecretary Daza announced the expansion of the vaccine supply for those over the age of 55 who have been fully vaccinated with Sinovac. From today, this group will be able to receive the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, as well as the AstraZeneca vaccine, as a booster dose.
In addition, changes will be made to the Pase de Movilidad for this age group. From December 1, people over the age of 55 who completed their vaccination scheme more than six months ago will be required to receive a booster dose in order to activate the document.
“We will be making changes to the Pase de Movilidad for this age group. From December 1, those over the age of 55 who received their second dose, or single-dose vaccine, more than six months age will be required to receive a booster dose in order to active their Pase de Movilidad. If six months have passed and they have not received the booster dose, their Pase de Movilidad will be deactivated. It will only be reactivated once they receive the booster dose. Therefore, it is important that everyone, especially those over the age of 55, get the booster dose when it is their turn, according to the vaccine calendar. This is not only to protect their health, which is the most important reason, but also to be able to continue taking part in the activities that the Pase de Movilidad allows,” Undersecretary Daza stated.
Healthcare Networks Undersecretary Alberto Dougnac announced the following changes to the Plan Paso a Paso, which will come into effect at 5am on Wednesday, October 27.