Mexico City – Mexico’s official national emergency for Covid-19 came to an end on May 9, 2023 after three years that have seen the virus claim nearly 334,000 lives in the country, a death toll exceeded only by the United States, Brazil, India, and Russia.
During President Andrés Manuel López Obrador Tuesday morning press conference, the Undersecretary for Health Prevention and Promotion (SPPS), Hugo López-Gatell Ramírez, explained that the president had signed the decree that puts an end to the validity of the original decree signed on March, 23 2020, in which the health emergency situation associated with COVID-19 was established in Mexico.
The decision of the Mexican Administration came just four days after the World Health Organization (WHO) announced the end of the emergency at the international level.
“The situation in Mexico meets the criteria established by the WHO in reaching its decision to discontinue the global emergency,” the head of the SPPS said.
López-Gatell specified that, on average, almost 95% of people in Mexico have antibodies against the SARS-CoV-2 virus, either because they were infected and sick, or because they were vaccinated; the foregoing, according to the preliminary results of the 2022 National Health and Nutrition Survey (Ensanut 2022).
The end of the health emergency adds to last week’s announcement of the launch of the Mexican Patria vaccine against the coronavirus. “We already have the Patria vaccine as a booster, with the data from the final phase being successful, the criteria established by the WHO for booster Covid vaccines has been met,” commented María Elena Álvarez-Buylla, the director of the new National Humanities Council, Sciences, Technologies and Innovation department.
The Covid-19 pandemic left more than 765 million diagnoses and 6.9 million deaths globally, according to the official count, although the WHO raises the figure to 20 million lives lost in relation to the disease.
Mexico, with roughly 7.59 million confirmed cases, did not impose lockdowns to contain the spread of Covid-19, and authorities also declined to place restrictions on international travel.
In other countries like the United States, restrictive measures against the disease have begun to relax. On May 11, the neighbor to the north of the border eliminated the vaccination requirement for foreigners entering the country, a measure that had been in force since November 2021.
Mexico’s deputy health secretary said that the government will continue to monitor Covid-19, to include coronavirus vaccines in its universal vaccination program, and recommending that people take precautions against infection.