Solomon Islands

Vaccine arrives for Solomon Islands

THE Solomon Islands have received 28,800 doses of AstraZeneca vaccine donated by New Zealand last Friday.

Minister of Health Hon Dr. Culwick Togamana, his Permanent Secretary Mrs. Pauline McNeil, New Zealand High Commissioner Georgina Roberts, Chief of UNICEF Solomon Islands Field Office Dr. Zelalem Taffesse, and other health officials were at the Henderson International Airport to receive the vaccines.

AstraZeneca vaccine arrives at Honiara airport from NZ Govt. Photo Credit: NZ Govt

“Dose-sharing through COVAX is one way in which Aotearoa New Zealand will continue to support access to COVID-19 vaccines, and it’s pleasing that the Solomon Islands is one of the first countries to receive some of these shared doses that we have made available,” said High Commissioner Georgina Roberts.

“We’ll keep working with government and partners to support our friends, whanau, and wantoks – the community that we live among – here in the Solomon Islands.”

These doses and logistics, funded by New Zealand through a donation to COVAX, were handed over to the Ministry of Health and Medical Services.

That was possible after New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Arden announced in April that New Zealand would share its 1.6 million doses of AstraZeneca allocated through COVAX to eligible countries. The Solomon Islands was one of the six Pacific nations to benefit.

According to a statement from the office of the commissioner, additional allocations would be announced.

“Vaccinations offer communities the best protection against the health impacts of COVID-19. COVID-19 has affected us all. We will all benefit from a vaccinated world. Protect yourself and your community; get vaccinated,” the statement said.

The country so far has recorded 20 cases with no deaths. A total of 21,469 vaccine doses have been administered.

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