Official party to attend vaccine arrival …Massive roll out is planned

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(Pointe Xpress)

An official party, including Prime Minister Gaston Browne and the Indian High Commissioner, will be on hand this morning to witness the arrival of forty thouand doses of vaccines donated by the government of India.

The vaccines’ arrival was delayed from last night to this morning at the V.C. Bird International Airport.

“Prime Minister Gaston Browne and Minister of Health Sir Molwyn Joseph will be on hand with Indian government officials to witness the arrival and hold a press conference immediately after,” an official release from the government’s communications director noted.

Following the arrival, the vaccines will be immediately distributed as the government undertakes a massive roll-out of the vaccines in order to achieve its goal of completing the vaccination of all adults who present themselves within a sixty-day period.

The government has set up four strategic sites where vaccinations will be carried out on a massive scale. These are the polyclinic in the Villa, the Multipurpose Cultural Centre, the Sir Novelle Richards Academy and the Glanville polyclinic.

Government sources say the centres will open at 11:00 a.m. today because the vaccines are due in Antigua at 8:30 this morning rather than last night as was earlier scheduled.

The centres will open daily with a cut-off time of 3:30 p.m. when the last person will be allowed to join the line.

Sir Molwyn led a team of senior technicians within the ministry on a series of vaccination site visits over the weekend to ensure readiness for Monday’s vaccination roll-out. The team included the Chief Medical Officer Dr. Rhonda Sealey-Thomas, Principal Nursing Officer Margaret Smith, and Acting Superintendent of Public Health Nursing Almarie Coates. The visits were held on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.

Meanwhile, Community clinics will attend to people who are shut-in owing to disability, and being physically unable to visit the vaccination centers.

Special arrangements have been made for the staff of all government departments and statutory organizations to receive their COVID-19 vaccination on the job site. This includes, but is not limited to, organizations such as the Antigua Barbuda Airport Authority (ABAA), Antigua Barbuda Port Authority, and the and Antigua Public Utilities Authority (APUA). On-site government ministries’ vaccination will commence from Tuesday, 2nd March onwards.

Special provisions have also been made for the vaccination of teachers through the Ministry of Education.  Additionally, vaccination of frontline workers continues. They include healthcare workers, members of the Antigua Barbuda Defence Force, The Royal Police Force of Antigua Barbuda, Immigration officers, and nursing homes.

For online registration visit www.vaccineantiguabarbuda.com and select the “Vaccine Registration” tab. Upon clicking the tab, you will be required to fill out your general information and when completed, click “submit.”  Your registration is then complete. Registration hotline numbers are 788-8299, 736-8295, 736-8298, 736-8299. Pre-registration is vital for efficiency in the vaccination process. Pre-registered persons and the elderly will be given at vaccination sites to ensure there is a smooth vaccination process.

The forty thousand AstraZeneca vaccines will arrive on the island today Monday 1st March.