Moderna gives Mexico 2.7 million shots as deaths top 300,000

A woman receives a booster against COVID-19 during a vaccination campaign for people 60 and over, in Mexico City, Tuesday, Jan. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Fernando Llano) (Fernando Llano, Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

MEXICO CITY – The U.S. company Moderna donated 2.7 million doses of coronavirus vaccine to Mexico Saturday as the country’s official death toll topped 300,000.

Mexico passed 300,000 test-confirmed coronavirus deaths this week, but so little testing is done in the country that a government review of death certificates puts to real toll at almost 460,000.

Mexican officials welcomed the arrival of the shipment at the airport in Toluca, just west of Mexico City, and said the vaccines will be used to inoculate teachers.

Teachers in Mexico were second after only health care workers to be vaccinated in the spring.

In April and May, over 2.7 million teachers got initial shots. But most of them got the single-dose Chinese Cansino vaccine, whose effectiveness appears to decline over time.

Mexico has now obtained over 200 million doses of vaccines, and has been trying to reopen in-person learning at all levels.

Education Secretary Delfina Gómez said, “We are grateful to recieve this donation, which will undoubtedly help more boys, girls and youths to come to classrooms with greater safety and confidence."