With no definitive date for the arrival of the next shipment of COVID-19 vaccines, Minister of Health and Wellness, Lieutenant Colonel Jeffrey Bostic, is urging Barbadians to “make use” of the vaccines that are available to them.
He made the plea this morning during a presentation of laptops to the Immunisation Unit from The Massy Foundation (Barbados) at the Masonic Centre, Salters, St. George.
Minister Bostic explained that Government was still waiting on the last shipment of vaccines (33,000 doses) through the COVAX facility as well as those promised by United States President Joe Biden to CARICOM member states.
He added that a large shipment of vaccines, which was anticipated for some time, still had not made it to these shores.
The Health Minister blamed the delays on the difficulties small developing states were facing in acquiring COVID-19 vaccines.
“I know there are some people who might prefer Pfizer for one reason or another, or Moderna. I say, make use of whatever vaccines we have available here in Barbados which have been approved because we don’t know when we are going to get those other vaccines. There have been challenges and this is a global problem; it is not affecting Barbados alone,” he stated.
When asked about the Sinopharm vaccine, the Health Minister said the Ministry would have to ramp up its public education on the vaccine in an effort to increase the uptake.
He added that just like the other vaccines that came before it, Sinopharm had been approved by the World Health Organization for emergency use.