Vaccination numbers exceed 38,000

The vaccination count now nears 39,000 with more than 20,000 of that number being male.

In an online statement on Wednesday morning, the Ministry of health (M.O.H) posted the current numbers of people who have been vaccinated with the COVID-19 vaccine. 

38,361 people in Samoa have been vaccinated and more than half of that number are males. Of that number, 21,288 are male while 17,073 are females. 

The country started with 24,000 doses through the World Health Organisation-organised COVAX Facility which had arrived in Samoa in April. 

Samoa has received its second batch of 28,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine with the expectation to kick off the second shot rollout on Monday, 14 June.   

The total assistance of 79,000 vaccines comes courtesy of the COVAX facility which is expected to cover 20 per cent of the eligible population.

The vaccine requires a second shot to be administered 8-12 weeks after the first, in order to be fully protected. 

The mass rollout of the AstraZeneca vaccine to the nation’s villages began in late April.

Those who will not be vaccinated include women who are pregnant or breastfeeding, people who are bedridden, youth less than 18 years of age and those over 85 years old (optional). 

The list also prohibits those with a high fever (above or equal to 38 degrees); weak immune systems, including those who have been on steroids for a long time; those receiving active cancer treatment; people with bleeding disorders, and a known history of severe allergic reactions to vaccines including skin rash, swelling of the throat and eyes and breathing difficulty. 

Australia and UNICEF (the United Nations Children’s Fund) had recently announced a partnership to finance the purchase of 6 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines for the Pacific and Timor-Leste.

The Australian Government had also recently contributed an additional AU$50 million ($100 million tala) to the COVAX Facility in a bid to boost equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines worldwide including Samoa.

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