Trinidad and Tobago’s COVID-19 vaccination campaign will slow down soon, as the country’s first doses are expected to run out by the end of the month.
According to the Prime Minister, Dr Keith Rowley, speaking at a press conference on COVID-19 on Saturday, noted that no vaccine deliveries were expected before the end of June. As a result, he said, the administration of the first doses would slow down until another shipment.
In the meantime, he said, the administration of second doses would continue and are expected to last until mid-July.
“If we don’t receive any cargo by the end of the month, we won’t have vaccines to give anyone a first dose. Once that is clear, I don’t expect people to come and say why you stop vaccinating, continue the vaccination program, we have to vaccinate the people. It’s not necessary. We can only vaccinate with vaccines.
“So by the end of this month, I expect that all the vaccines we have and available for a first dose would have been used up. The vaccination program continues because we have vaccines on hand to give people their second dose. People who have already received their first dose will receive their second dose. This will take us to mid-July. by that time, 377,000 vaccines we had would have been completely depleted in both the first and second dose, ”he said.
Rowley added that there are four possible sources of incoming vaccines over the next few months. The country’s third COVAX shipment of around 33,600, he said, is expected to arrive in late July.
“There are probably two expeditions on the way. Our third COVAX shipment, I was informed this morning, was again delayed until July. It seems that towards the end of July if there is no more delay since the end of COVAX. It has nothing to do with the government of the Minister of Health, we are the beneficiaries. If we have used up everything we have by the second week of July, that means there will be an interim period where there will be no vaccination going on. That’s 33,000 doses if they are not reduced in the process, ”he said.
On top of that, he said, the government intends to continue purchasing Sinopharm vaccine from China. He estimated that a quarter of a million vaccines would arrive in July. The exact number of arrivals from China, he said, has not yet been clarified.
“We are also continuing to purchase from China and expect there will be another one in July in the order similar to the one we just received. We will wait until we have received the shipping document and confirmation to let you know that this is the other source of vaccine. If things go as planned, we should have a quarter of a million doses during the month of July, ”he said.
The country can also expect a delivery from the African Medical Supply Platform in August, he said. However, the promise of the United States to share its vaccine supplies, he said, remains only a promise.
“We’re still on track with the expectations of our African medical supply platform, but remember it’s August. The fourth pledge is the pledge of the United States to share their vaccines, we haven’t seen anything beyond it so far, we haven’t seen anything happen and we don’t know if we will qualify, ”he said. -he declares.