'Best gift': Vaccinations begin in Latin America

Several countries across Latin America began receiving vaccine deliveries this holiday week -- bringing some the 'gift' of hope for brighter days ahead.

Mexico inoculated its first person against COVID-19, amid a pandemic that has killed 120,000 people in the country and battered the economy, celebrating a Christmas roll-out.

The Pfizer vaccine was given to 59-year-old nurse Maria Irene Ramirez, head nurse at the intensive care unit of Mexico City's Ruben Leñero hospital.

"It's the best gift in 2020 I could have got. And this means that I can go on now with more security, to move ahead in this war against an invisible enemy."

Pfizer's is the first COVID-19 vaccine to reach Mexico, which has also signed deals for vaccines from other firms. Wednesday's shipment contained only 3,000 doses of the vaccine.

Chile received the first 10,000 doses of a 10-million order of the Pfizer vaccine on Thursday, with inoculations of health workers beginning immediately, while in Argentina, some 300,000 doses of Russia's Sputnik V vaccine arrived from Moscow.

No COVID-19 vaccine has been approved yet for use in Brazil, Latin America's most populous country.

But brazil has received 5.5 million doses of a Chinese vaccine developed by Sinovac Biotech as part of several trials underway.

Brazil's right-wing President Jair Bolsonaro, however, has pledged not to take any coronavirus vaccine even if its approved by Brazil's health authorities.