White House confirms that second tranche of Pfizer vaccine will be shipped to CARICOM states in November, free of charge

Antigua and Barbuda is expected to receive its second tranche of the BioNtech Pfizer vaccine next month, as the United States Government says it is preparing the donation.

Reports are that the White House notified CARICOM, early last week, that approximately 550,000 doses would be ready to ship in November to member-countries.

As part of that donation, the Ministry of Health is set to receive a shipment of 23,400 doses. 

The first donation by the US Government of 17,550 doses arrived on the island on August 12.

US Ambassador Linda Tagliatela says her Administration is encouraged by the positive response, here, “to the availability of the cutting-edge Pfizer vaccine.”

That response caused the Ministry of Health to run low on stock, putting a halt on new vaccinations with this drug.  Only second doses of the Pfizer vaccine are being administered at this time.

It was noted that the upcoming donation reflects the continued commitment by the United States to increase vaccine supply and access to the Caribbean, free of charge and with no strings attached.

All vaccines donated by the US Government are approved by its Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

The Pfizer vaccine is the only vaccine approved for use in children 12-years and older, and is undergoing an approval process for use in children as young as five years old.

Meanwhile …

The country’s active COVID-19 cases continue to decline and have dropped to 432.

Last Thursday, October 21, 16 new lab-confirmed infections were recorded, coming out of 110 samples processed at the Sir Lester Bird Medical Centre and 77 at the Caribbean Public Health Agency.

Then on Friday, October 22, new cases dropped again, with only nine being recorded.  Those were realized from 167 samples processed locally.

Over the two days, 115 persons are reported to have recovered from the virus: 78 on Thursday and 37 on Friday.  Therefore, the total number of recoveries stands at 3,466.  There are 22 hospitalized cases at present. 

Additionally, the Ministry of Health reports that there were two COVID-19 related deaths last week, increasing the total to 99, based on its count.

The total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Antigua and Barbuda is now 4,018. 

Meanwhile, 48,797 individuals are fully vaccinated, while 6,906 have received their first dose.