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Sunday, June 20, 2021

$5 billion allotted for 3 million doses of COVID vaccines

The Authorities has allotted $5 billion for the procurement of greater than three million doses of COVID-19 vaccines that, it expects, will considerably enhance the nation’s immunisation programme.

This can take the nation effectively over the preliminary 16 per cent of the inhabitants that the Ministry of Well being and Wellness had initially projected would vaccinated in opposition to the novel coronavirus this 12 months.

“We’re able now, primarily based on the price range, to say that now we have the sources to safe vaccines for some two million Jamaicans,” Well being and Wellness Minister Dr Christopher Tufton introduced at a digital COVID Dialog information convention yesterday night.

The announcement comes after the tabling of the 2021/2022 estimates of expenditure by Finance Minister Dr Nigel Clarke in Parliament yesterday afternoon.

Minister Tufton stated the Authorities had shifted from deliberating over whether or not the nation had sufficient funds to buy enough provides of the vaccine, to now securing the precise vaccines.

“The discussions which can be going down now are round how will we safe the shares of vaccines, not whether or not or not we are able to afford it. We have now locked these funds and due to this fact it actually now could be a operate of whether or not we are able to get it,” he stated.

“We are able to purchase as much as 3.5 million doses, 5 billion Jamaican {dollars}, two million Jamaicans, and that is a dedication that the Authorities is making to the populace as a part of the COVID response,” the minister stated.

In the meantime, the Authorities continues negotiations with Moderna, in addition to the African Medical Provides Platform by Caricom for the securing of vaccines.

Dr Tufton additionally introduced a dedication from the Indian Authorities to donate 50,000 doses of the COVAXIN vaccine to Jamaica, whereas one other 50,000 doses are anticipated to be procured by the non-public sector in partnership with the well being ministry.

He additional acknowledged that the Authorities’s deployment and vaccination plan will probably be largely hinged on whether or not they can safe provides.

“The three.5 million doses that we hope will probably be procured, which might imply some two million Jamaicans would be capable of get the vaccine this 12 months, needs to be a operate of the provision of the shares.

“Along with that, do not forget that our dedication is to safe vaccines which can be secure and [which] undergo the method and that’s how now we have operated so far,” stated Dr Tufton.

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