The COVID-19 pandemic has presented itself as one of the biggest challenges faced by humanity in recent years. In Mexico, the first official cases of the disease were confirmed in February 2020, although some had already been reported weeks before. By the end of May, the number of infections in the country had already surpassed 100 thousand and in November it had reached one million, with the number of deaths nearing 100 thousand. Nearly two years later, as of January 2022 more than four million cases, and 300 thousand deaths had been documented, with Mexico City as the federate entity with the highest number of patients. The most recent increase on cases has been unfolding on the weeks following the country’s 2021end-of-year celebrations, sustained by the ongoing spread of the Omicron variant, and an ease on restrictions. However, it is believed that these figures might underestimate the real reach of the local outbreak, since Mexico has been considered to have a low testing rate in comparison to other countries, particularly at the beginning of the pandemic.
A traffic light scheme
Despite the first cases of COVID-19 being confirmed by the end of February 2020, it was not until a month later that a National Health Emergency was declared by the government, with critics stating that the risks had been downplayed during the first weeks of the outbreak. A general quarantine lasted until mid-May, when a period gradually aiming at a “new normal” was declared until the beginning of June. From that month on, a “traffic light” scheme was implemented. The system, still in place today, consists of four colors which stand for different contingency plans based on a series of epidemiological indicators. A choice of color or plan is reviewed regularly for each municipality and state.
These contingency measures, though necessary for limiting the spread of the disease, have had serious sanitary, social, and economic consequences in the Latin American country. While some impact can already be measured in indicators such as Mexico’s GDP, and unemployment rates, the full reach of this multifaceted crisis is yet to be estimated and will likely differ between regions and sectors. Families, however, have experienced firsthand the consequences since the beginning of the pandemic, with challenges going from economic and household-related concerns, to physical and mental health problems.
Vaccination against COVID-19 began in Mexico at the end of December 2020, starting with medical personnel and the oldest population. As of January 2022, close to 63 percent of the country’s citizens had been at least partially vaccinated and around 56 percent were already considered fully immunized but had not yet received a booster. The campaign has been carried out on phases, with different age groups and municipalities inoculated according to a national plan. As of January, 2022, Mexico had a total of 204.83 million confirmed doses of COVID-19 vaccines, while according to demographic estimates, more than 250 million doses would be needed to immunize the entire population. AstraZeneca's viral vector vaccine, produced nationally, was the one with the most doses confirmed for the country, with a total of 79.43 million. As of that date, the Latin American country was starting its booster campaign, following the same scheme as with previous shots. Looking forward, and with a population generally willing to get vaccinated, efforts will need to be concentrated on providing enough doses and offering vaccination options to Mexico’s youngest citizens. As for the outbreak, the country has yet to deal with a recent and unprecedented increase on cases.
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In the following 6 chapters, you will quickly find the 30 most important statistics relating to "Coronavirus (COVID-19) in Mexico".