Health and Wellness Minster, Dr Christopher Tufton, says that 16,096 persons were inoculated during the first week of the vaccination programme, representing 94 per cent of the 17,050 target.
Those vaccinated include healthcare workers, the elderly, and members of the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF) and the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF).
“This means we are just short six percentage points of the overall number we have set, which I think is very good,” Dr Tufton said.
He was speaking at the vaccine implementation contract-signing ceremony with itelbpo smart solutions on Thursday (March 18) at the Ministry’s offices in New Kingston.
The Government started the vaccination programme on Wednesday (March 10), after the first set of 50,000 doses of AstraZeneca vaccines donated by the Government of India arrived in Jamaica on March 8.
The Government of Jamaica also received a shipment of 14,400 doses of AstraZeneca vaccines under the COVAX Facility on March 15 to continue vaccinating vulnerable groups across the island.
“We have administered, I’m told, up to today, nearly 1,700 vials each with 10 doses. We are now at 34 per cent of our target for the month and just one per cent of the target for the year, so we still have a long way to go,” he noted.
Minister Tufton said that the first week was a learning experience for the team, and the Government will continue to collaborate with “partners here and abroad to ensure that we receive the four million doses of vaccines that we are trying to secure for the 65 per cent of the population that we would like to inoculate by now and March 2022”.