2 March, 2021, 1:14 am Central - 24°C Rain

COVID-19 vaccines anticipated to arrive in the country soon - Dr Waqainabete
Options are Oxford Astrazeneca or Pfizer

COVID-19 vaccines anticipated to arrive in the country soon - Dr Waqainabete

Options are Oxford Astrazeneca or Pfizer

By Shanil Singh
Wednesday 24/02/2021
[image: File]

Expect the COVID-19 vaccines to arrive in the country as early as next month.

This has been highlighted by the Minister for Health Dr Ifereimi Waqainabete while receiving two new 9 tonne cooler trucks worth $374,310 from the Japanese Government.

When questioned by fijivillage Doctor Waqainabete says the target is to get the vaccines in the first quarter of this year and work is now underway with digitalFiji to get a proper registration process and evidence of people having proof of getting vaccinated.

He says the framework is in place, we already have one of the highest immunisation rates in the world and Fiji does not have vaccine hesitancy.

The options are Oxford Astrazeneca which will be suitable for our climate and even Pfizer which requires storage in very low temperatures.

Dr Waqainabete says the assistance has come at an exciting time and will assist in the distribution of vaccines and medicines to the allocated health facilities.

He adds the Ministry of Health has included three new vaccines through its expanded immunization program and the assistance will further strengthen that space.

The Health Minister says this not only applies to COVID-19 vaccines but others as well which require cold chain storage.

The Japanese Ambassador to Fiji, Kawakami Fumihiro says the vaccination cold chain plays a critical role in vaccine storage and transportation.

He says it is now becoming more important than ever as the whole world races to get COVID-19 vaccines.

Fumihiro adds he is looking forward to the new cooler trucks helping address the challenges in the cold chain management and further supporting the Ministry with the introduction of new vaccines, especially the COVID-19 vaccine.

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