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The older adult became the first person in the process of reincorporation to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. Photo: ARN Communications.
After answering a call from her Healthcare Provider Company while she was resting at home in the department of Sucre, Gladys* (80), became the first female ex-combatant to receive the COVID-19 vaccine in Colombia.
The older adult, who is part of the reincorporation process, went to the Local Hospital closest to her residence, with a relative and the accompaniment of the Agency for Reincorporation and Normalization (ARN).
Following the guidelines of the national government, in coordination with the Ministry of Health and Social Protection, the ARN began the process of permanent accompaniment to former combatants prioritized within the framework of the National Vaccination Plan against COVID-19.
Visibly excited and still brandishing her vaccination card, Gladys expressed her satisfaction after voluntarily accessing the first phase of her vaccination process.
“I feel very good, thank God. I ask God to allow other older adults to feel encouraged to get the COVID vaccine and to have a healthy life with their families", said this woman in reincorporation.
This woman in reincorporation is one of the oldest beneficiaries in the ARN, and in the past she had complex family difficulties, including the loss of her children. In addition, just last year, she suffered the death of her husband, due to health complications. Therefore, in the midst of difficult times, she assures that she receives the vaccine as a dose of hope to push on through.
ARN made a disbursement for Gladys' individual productive livestock project that she submitted for funding, last year – at that time in the company of her husband. However, after his departure, she has continued to work as the head of the household and is dedicated to the production and sale of milk.
In addition to her productive livestock project, Gladys is part of the “Huevos Damasco" initiative, made up of 33 people in reincorporation from Sucre, which is managed by the co-op Asociación Multiactiva por un Desarrollo Común, mainly dedicated to raising hens.
Like Mrs. Gladys, the ARN will accompany 15 ex-combatants aged 80 and over throughout Colombia – of which 13 are part of the reincorporation process – to access the vaccination process free of charge and with equal opportunities for all Colombians.
The Director General of the Agency for Reincorporation and Normalization (ARN) Andrés Felipe Stapper believes it is a matter of priority to ensure the well-being of the ex-combatant population. “Health is a primary issue; therefore we will work hand in hand with the other entities of the national government to ensure that the population that is legally committed to peace and their families are vaccinated and have effective monitoring of their health. I invite all ex-combatants to join this vaccination campaign safely and reliably, and thus prevent the coronavirus from spreading" – he said.
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