🚨 Despite one of the world's quickest vaccination rates, Chile has had to close its borders and tighten lockdown again

Medical experts in the country blamed the government for causing cases to surge by reopening the economy too early as the vaccination programme forged ahead
Prof Chris Whitty, England's chief medical officer, says what had happened in Chile contrasted with Israel, which also achieved high vaccination levels rapidly, and where cases have plummeted
He said it was unclear whether the differences between the two countries were due to:

📌 The timings of the vaccine rollouts
📌 The jabs used
📌 The emergence of coronavirus variants
The UK has given a first vaccine dose to over 31 million people, and Boris Johnson has faced calls to end lockdown more quickly
💉 Countries progress at different rates to distribute a vaccine 💉 Image
Prof Whitty says: "We absolutely need to learn from those countries that are far ahead of us or alongside us, in terms of vaccine rollout...Just because you vaccinate lots of people then the problem goes away, I think Chile is quite a good corrective to that"
Chile has fully vaccinated 20% of its population of 19 million – well ahead of the UK.

Nearly half of Chileans have received at least one vaccine dose
Despite opposition from medical experts, President Sebastián Piñera began reopening the country at speed.

In November:

📌 Chile allowed in holidaymakers from abroad

In January:

📌 Citizens were allowed to travel domestically

In March:

📌 Schools reopened
At present:

📌 The morgue in Valparaiso is full
📌 Daily cases have reached 8,000
📌 Deaths have climbed over 100 a day for the first time since June
In response, Mr Piñera ordered a new lockdown covering 80% of the population Image
The situation in Israel, which has a population of 9.3 million, has been markedly different.

📌 5.27 million Israelis over the age of 16 have received a first dose
📌 Of those, 4.84 million have received a second shot and been fully vaccinated
Israel has reduced new cases to a few hundred a day, and deaths are below 20. It introduced a "Green Pass" passport for fully vaccinated people to use certain services like hotels.

The country's coronavirus tsar says Israelis may be able to stop mask wearing outdoors next week

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