Migrants at Tijuana campsite ask for COVID-19 vaccines as some show signs of illness

Border Report

A makeshift camp of migrants sits at the border port of entry leading to the United States, Wednesday, March 17, 2021, in Tijuana, Mexico. The migrant camp shows how confusion has undercut the message from U.S. President Joe Biden that it’s not the time to come to the United States. Badly misinformed, some 1,500 migrants who set up tents across the border from San Diego harbor false hope that Biden will open entry briefly and without notice. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)

TIJUANA (Border Report) — Migrants who live at a makeshift campsite just south of the border are requesting they be vaccinated for COVID-19 due to the prevalence of respiratory illnesses at the camp.

The migrants say they continue to get ill due to having to live out in the elements, especially the cold temperatures.

About 2,000 people are now believed to be staying at the site.

One of the residents, Evelin Anabela, said the tents being used by the migrants don’t keep the cold out and her children are constantly getting sick.

The state of Baja California has set up a mobile clinic at the site but it is constantly busy and can’t treat everyone in a timely manner.

“With all the illnesses going around here, the COVID-19 vaccine would make us all feel a bit safer, there are so many people sick all the time with nasal congestion and colds, everyone is getting sick even the adults,” said Anabela.

Anabela, who is from Honduras, has been living at the camp since February with her two sons, and claims she has been seeking out the vaccine for quite some time without any luck.

“We’re all looking for a place to get the vaccine, thank God we haven’t gotten covid,” she said.

In terms of overall COVID-19 cases in Tijuana, the state of Baja California is reporting a dip in numbers.

The only region still showing more cases is the city of Mexicali, Baja California’s capital located on the border about 120 miles east of San Diego.

According to health officials, the bulk of hospitalizations now are young adults.

Alonso Pérez Rico is Baja California’s Secretary of Health. (Courtesy: Baja California)

“We’ve relaxed some of the protective measures and that has created an impact, we are still asking people not to gather, not do organize parties, let’s buy more time while we vaccinate more people,” said Secretary of Health Alonso Pérez Rico. “As of today, we can’t discuss a trend until we have seven consecutive days with declining numbers we can’t really call it that, it’s only been three days.”

According to statistics provided by the state’s health department, 65 patients are hospitalized with the virus; 29 are on ventilators.

Overall, there have been 48,545 COVID-19 cases in Baja California with 8,125 deaths.

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