Gov’t opens two new vaccination centres; over 65s to be given priority

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The Ministry Health has added two new Covid vaccination centres to cater to the elderly.

It has also disclosed plans to inoculate people who are incapacitated or disabled within their homes, and a scheduling system will be put in place to facilitate this.

In a media statement on Wednesday, the ministry said the new sites – in All Saints and Jennings – will be used primarily to vaccinate residents who are over the age of 65 as a matter of priority.

From March 8 to 10, All Saints Secondary and Jennings Primary schools will serve, temporarily, as the new centres to allow convenient access to elderly people in the south of Antigua.

During this period, the vaccination sites at the Glanvilles and Villa polyclinics will be temporarily closed, as the teams will be redeployed to the new centres.

The sites at Glanvilles and Villa will resume vaccinations from March 11.

The statement from the Ministry of Health also noted that teachers will receive their jabs at the Antigua Girls’ High School over a three-day period from March 8 to 10.

Though there have been complaints over the level of organisation at some vaccination centres, the Health Ministry has reported that vaccination numbers so far are well into the thousands.

Since the national rollout started, 5,400 adults have received an initial AstraZeneca shot. Dominica gifted the first batch of 5,000 doses, followed by a gift of 40,000 doses from India.

Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Dr Rhonda Sealey-Thomas also disclosed that smaller teams will be vaccinating certain government workers at their worksites.

Employees of Clarevue Psychiatric Hospital, St John Hospice, the National Solid Waste Management Authority, APUA, the FSRC, the ABAA, ABS, teachers, persons with disabilities, High Court workers, police and other uniformed bodies, plus prison staff, will receive vaccines on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday next week.

The list is not exhaustive, the CMO pointed out; workers should consult their supervisors and permanent secretaries for availability.

Hotel workers, funeral home workers, and other non-government bodies will also receive their vaccines on the weekend and next week.

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