On Saturday, Minister of Health Terrence Deyalsingh delivered some welcoming news to the population, announcing that this country will be receiving between 100,000 to 120,000 doses of the vaccine to fight COVID-19.
He detailed that the AstraZenecca vaccine would be used allowing between 50,000 to 60,000 people to be vaccinated in the first instance.
The vaccines, he said, would reach this country by the end of this month into early March.
The news no doubt opens a window of optimism for many who have been questioning if the Government has concrete and definitive plans for the roll-out of its vaccination drive.
Last Thursday, president of the American Chamber of Commerce T&T, Patricia Ghany expressed that she feared this country could be among the last to fully re-open because of the seemingly slow pace at which COVID-19 vaccines were being imported.
Ghany called for a “widespread vaccination plan…to ensure the majority of the population is vaccinated in the shortest possible time, ideally by the middle of the year at latest.”
Her concerns were centred around the initial announcement by the Health Minister that 25,000 citizens would be vaccinated against the coronavirus on a phased basis later this year.
Now the population has learned of a brand new plan.
While it is encouraging, it also leaves room for ambiguity.
On January 6, Minister Deyalsingh said the Moderna vaccine, based on research, was more ideal for this country even though the Pfizer vaccine had been approved for the region through the World Health Organisation and Pan America Health Organisation.
Now the country is being told that AstraZenecca vaccine would be the administered in this country.
It is understandable there would be teething problems in the early stages of any project, but a COVID fatigued citizenry may be wary of being told one thing, then another, only for the plan to change again—despite how promising it may seem.
While most people have been wearing masks and adhering to all health regulations, they are eager to return to some semblance of normalcy; for businesses to boom; for their stranded loved ones to return home; for schools to fully reopen; for the emotional and mental healing to begin—all of which hinges on a solid, unwavering vaccination plan and drive.
It is, after all, what this enduring population needs and deserves during this leg of the COVID marathon.