President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador defended Mexico’s federal health regulator, Cofepris (Comisión Federal para la Protección contra Riesgos Sanitarios), after the institution approved the Abdalá Covid-19 vaccine developed by Cuba.
Among the few countries that have authorized the use of the Cuban vaccine are Vietnam, Iran, Venezuela and Nicaragua.
Left-leaning Lopez Obrador dismissed safety concerns about the vaccine, stressing that ideological issues have no place when it comes to people’s health. The World Health Organization has not approved Abdala, and few independent studies on its efficacy have been carried out, although its Cuban developers say it has shown 90-percent effectiveness at preventing serous effects from Covid-19.
Referring to the criticism of Abdalá as “dogmatism,” Lopez Obrador insisted that Cofepris’ stamp of approval is fully valid, since the institution is run by “serious and responsible” scientists.
Mexican Health Secretary Jorge Alcocer said that Abdalá would probably be considered only as a booster dose and its application in Mexico will depend on its availability, which Cuban authorities have yet to decide upon.