Ecuador: Coronavirus vaccination mandatory for most citizens

World

A woman gets her shot of the COVID-19 vaccine, in Quito, Ecuador, Thursday, Dec. 23, 2021. The government of Ecuador has declared COVID vaccination mandatory after a marked rise of infections and the arrival of new variants of the disease. (AP Photo/Carlos Noriega)

QUITO, Ecuador (AP) — Ecuador said Thursday that vaccination against the coronavirus will be mandatory for most citizens.

Only Ecuadorians with a medical condition that could be complicated by vaccination will be exempt from the new rule, the government said in a statement. Those people must have documentation to prove it, according to the statement.

The government said it was implementing the requirement because of an increase in coronavirus infections and the circulation of new variants such as omicron. Ecuador has enough vaccines to ″immunize the entire population,″ the government said.

This week, Ecuador’s Special Operations Committee, which runs health policies to combat the pandemic, said vaccination certificates must be shown in order to access places such as restaurants, cinemas and other public areas.

As of Tuesday, about 77% of 17.3 million people in Ecuador have been vaccinated. More than 920,000 people have received a booster shot.

About 33,600 people in Ecuador are confirmed to have died from COVID-19 since the start of the pandemic.

Last month, Austria announced a national lockdown and a plan to mandate vaccinations as coronavirus infections hit a record high.

Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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