UK donates another batch of Astra-Zeneca vaccines, as High Commissioner says no one is safe from COVID until all are safe

Even though the number of vaccinated residents has not moved above 63,000 for several months now, the Government has accepted a new shipment of AstraZeneca vaccines from the United Kingdom (UK).

The local supply of AstraZeneca, one of the more popular anti-COVID-19 drugs, was exhausted at the end of July. As a result, the British High Commission St. John’s office attempted to source a new batch for the country.

Resident British Commissioner Lindsey Thompson joined Health Minister Molwyn Joseph and his team to welcome the UK’s latest donation of 5,040 doses of the vaccine on Saturday, August 6.

Thompson says this most recent donation reinforces the UK’s commitment to supporting the local fight against the disease.  While the Nation’s vaccination rates are some of the best in the region, she says, no one is safe until we are all safe. 

Accordingly, she reiterates the advice given by the Ministry of Health and is encouraging all eligible persons to get vaccinated and/or boosted.

The UK has been at the forefront of the global response to COVID-19 and has supported the development of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine. It donated 12,000 doses of the drug to Antigua and Barbuda in August 2021.

Batches of another vaccine used here, the Pfizer BioNTec, expired at the end of July, and unused doses would have had to be discarded by Health officials.

To date, 62,171 people have been fully inoculated, while 2,005 have been partially vaccinated.

In the meanwhile, the most recent dashboard released by the Ministry of Health shows 25 active cases of COVID-19, with 14 new infections confirmed as of Tuesday, August 2.

Ten of these cases were recorded on July 29; two on July 30; one on August 1; and another on August 2 among 94 samples processed at the hospital.

During this period there were 21 recoveries, no hospitalized cases, and no new deaths.

The total number of lab-confirmed COVID-19 cases in Antigua and Barbuda is now 8,787.

The Carnival and fete season ended last week and many residents are expecting the number to increase.