• The San Juan Daily Star

Arecibo is first island town to achieve 99% vaccination rate

By John McPhaul

Arecibo has been recognized as the first municipality in Puerto Rico to achieve 99% vaccination against the coronavirus, according to a report by The New York Times.

The report, “Tracking Coronavirus in Puerto Rico: Latest Map and Case Count,” also mentions that the municipality of Guaynabo occupies seventh place, Bayamón 10th and Ponce the 21st position.

“We have really worked hard since we took office in January, the vaccination clinics being open at night, until 9 at night, have definitely been very effective, identifying the most isolated areas and treating them in a special way, and especially the organization of our work team, led by epidemiologist Yanira Ortiz,” said Arecibo Mayor Carlos “Tito” Ramírez Irizarry. “That is the reason that we have 99% of the population duly vaccinated.”

The mayor said the municipality also is ready to administer the third dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine to those who require it.

“We have also been very attentive to the bedridden population,” he said. “Yesterday, in fact, we carried out a vaccination event in the Arrozal Los Muertos community, in the mountainous area of our town and where the population density is very low. In this effort, it is important to provide the service to those people who have transportation problems to reach the vaccination centers. We go where they are.”

The next vaccination events in Arecibo are at the Barrio Hato Arriba community center on Wednesday, at the Barrio Carrera field on Tuesday, Oct. 5, and on Tuesday, Oct. 12, America’s Discovery Day, at the community center in Barrio Río Arriba. They are all from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Ramírez Irizarry added that residents of neighboring municipalities, or of other towns, who are interested in going to one of the three upcoming vaccination events are welcome to do so.

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