Vaccine program focuses on Faleata No. 3, No. 4

The Ministry of Health’s vaccination rollout program will focus on the Faleata No. 3 and Faleata No. 4 districts this week as the total number of vaccinations nationwide top 19,000.

The program in the two neighbouring districts will run from Monday to Friday this week. According to data from the M.O.H. a total of 19,051 people have already undergone vaccination with the first shot of AstraZeneca with 10,673 males and 8,378 females.

Since Sunday the program has covered the regions of Vaimauga No. 1 and Vaimauga No. 2 districts, kicking off at the beginning of the month.

The Faleata No. 1 and No. 2 districts had their vaccination last weekend with 19 sites earmarked for the program while nine sites were identified for the Faleata No. 3 and No. 4 districts.

For the Faleata No. 3 and No. 4 districts teams have been dispatched to Vaitele tai and uta, Vaitele-fou,Saina,Faleata, Toamua and Puipaa/Safune while additional sites are at the Red Cross Office at Tuanaimato and the Flea Market at Fugalei.

The Ministry has also established fixed vaccination sites at the Health Centre in Matagialalua, the Samoa Tourism Authority (S.T.A. Samoan Fale) and another two sites at Motootua.

Vaccine hesitancy continues to be a challenge for the local health authorities, as a visit by the Samoa Observer to one site at the Vaitele Methodist Church around 1pm on Monday, showed empty seats with health the workers confirming only 12 people turning up to get inoculated. 

The second batch of the vaccination arrived last week Friday: a total of 28,000 delivered via the World Health Organization–managed COVAX Facility.

A total of 27,000 vaccines are expected to arrive in the country in June with the health authorities expecting a total of 79,000 through the COVAX Facility. It is expected to cover 20 per cent of Samoa’s total population.

The administration of the second batch of AstraZeneca from 14 June is expected to boost efforts by the health authorities to vaccinate 98 per cent of the total population this year. 

In the past fortnight the M.O.H. continues to promote restrictions to prevent the COVID-19 pandemic breaching the national border, while maintaining that the travellers who are yet to get fully vaccinated will be barred from entering Samoa on scheduled repatriation flights.

National Emergency Operation Center (N.E.O.C.) Interim Chairman, Agafili Shem Leo said of the thousands of people who received their first dose since the opening of the vaccination sites, the M.O.H. has not heard any reports of people experiencing serious complications.

He had also taken out time thanking the Government leaders, village councils, women's committees and church ministers for their role in encouraging people to get themselves vaccinated.

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