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Costa Rica extends vaccine eligibility for all foreigners

Coronavirus vaccines. Stock photo for illustrative purposes.
Image by Wilfried Pohnke.

Through October 28, Costa Rica Social Security Fund (CCSS) establishments will continue vaccinating irregular migrants against Covid-19, the organization announced.

This extends the initial period, which expired Friday, October 14.

As explained by Dr. Mario Ruiz Cubillo, medical manager of the CCSS, the organization’s health centers will apply the Covid-19 vaccine to all migrants over 18 years of age regardless of their legal status in Costa Rica.

“Any person over 18 years of age, regardless of their nationality, their immigration status or proof of roots, will be able to start their vaccination scheme against this disease,” he said.

This population will likely receive the AstraZeneca vaccine, since Costa Rica has about 250,000 available doses of that formula. The CCSS says vaccinating foreigners will not prevent Costa Ricans and legal residents from receiving their shots.

“There are doses of the vaccine against Covid-19 that expire at the end of the next 3 months, so we see this action as very positive, which allows us to vaccinate a greater number of people who reside and coexist in the country, hoping to apply these doses until stocks are exhausted,” Ruiz said.

According to the CCSS, from October 8-14, some 28,845 doses of the Covid-19 vaccine were administered to foreigners in Costa Rica. Of these, 17,299 correspond to first doses and 11,546 to second.

The Covid-19 vaccine will be a requirement to enter many businesses in Costa Rica as of December 1.

Vaccination locations and times are available on the CCSS website at www.ccss.sa.cr/vacunacion.

Who can get vaccinated in Costa Rica?

All citizens and residents who are adults (18+) or who are teenagers (12+) with risk factors are eligible for the vaccine. Documented migrants are also eligible. Undocumented migrants (e.g. perpetual tourists) can receive a vaccine in the special period as detailed above. Click here for a list of Covid-19 vaccination sites in Costa Rica.

Costa Rica is administering the Pfizer and AstraZeneca vaccines. Both comprise two doses. Immunosuppressed individuals will receive a booster (third) dose in 2022.

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