Monday, April 12, 2021

20,000 Vaccine Doses to Land on Sunday

The Bahamas will receive its first batch of COVID-19 AstraZeneca vaccines on Sunday.

The Office of the Prime Minister announced that this first batch includes 20,000 doses which is a donation from the Government of India.

The big picture

Over 2 weeks ago, Prime Minister Hubert Minnis announced that the country was to receive the first batch of the 100,000 doses of Astra-Zeneca vaccine this month. He added that the government also secured a commitment from the Government of India for a small quantity of AstraZeneca vaccines from a WHO/Emergency Use Listing (EUL)-approved manufacturer in India.

Like the Bahamas, the UK will receive 10 million AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine doses produced by the Serum Institute of India (SII).

SII is the world’s largest vaccine manufacturer by volume, in mass-producing the AstraZeneca vaccine, developed with Oxford University, for poor and middle-income countries.

The details

The vaccines were pre-qualified by the World Health Organization (WHO) and received Emergency Use Listing (EUL) approval by the WHO. The vaccines have also received certification from the Caribbean Regulatory System (CRS).

The donation is part of a commitment from India to donate a total of 500,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine to Caribbean Community (CARICOM) countries.

Minnis thanked the Government of India for the donation on behalf of the Bahamian Government and the people of The Bahamas.

Dr. Minnis will provide a live update on the rollout of this first batch of vaccines on Sunday, to be aired live on ZNS Ch. 211 and local TV stations, and live-streamed on the Office of the Prime Minister’s Facebook page, @opmbs.

Why it matters

The AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine is known as an effective vaccine to prevent the spread of the infectious disease, beginning 2 weeks after the second dose.

Many Bahamians have expressed suspicion about the use of vaccines. It remains to be seen what percentage of Bahamians will take the vaccine.

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