Samoa Receives Second Batch of AstraZeneca


The second batch of AstraZeneca for Samoa will arrive tomorrow as confirmed by the Assitant Director of the Ministry of Health, Tagaloa Dr Robert Thompson during a press conference.

Tagaloa says 28,000 AstraZeneca doses are expected on the freight only flight due to arrive into Samoa as part of the speical assistance from the COVAX facility.

Samoa’s Covid-19 vaccination programme started  on the 18th of April 2021, with Caretaker Prime Minister Tuilaepa Dr Sailele Malielegaoi and Health Minister Faimalotoa Kika Stowers amongst the first to receive their initial doses.

AstraZeneca is a two-dose vaccine approved by the World Health Organisation (WHO) and distributed by the COVAX facility and its partners.

COVAX is co-led by CEPIGavi and WHO, alongside key delivery partner UNICEF.

Tagaloa says the vaccination outreach programme continues by constituency and has now reached Faleata 1 and Faleata 2.

He is encouraging all eligible people to be vaccinated while the vaccination programme continues.

National Emergency Operation Centre Chairman Agafili Tomaimano Shem Leo says out of more than 15,000 people who have already been vaccinated, no one has been experiencing critical side effects from the doses.

“We encourage everyone to get vaccinated while we are in the grace period so that Samoa will be protected, for if there is a time Coronavirus reaches our shores,” Agafili says.

Agafili says Samoa has secured enough doses to cover the estimated 133,000 Samoan residents eligible for vaccination.

“Our total number from the COVAC assistance is 79,000 however Samoa is currently in talks with development partners such as New Zealand and Australia, to supply the rest.

“Do not panic or feel you have to rush to get in on this first batch of 24,000 as there will be enough for everyone and don’t forget, not all of us are vaccinated, it is limited to those 18 years and older.”

The NEOC Chair added that all those vaccinated shall receive a printed certificate of confirmation as a record of their covid-19 vaccination status.

The fixed sites for vaccination says Tagaloa are still available every day at Matagialalua, Samoa Tourism Authority Fale and so as two sites at the Tupua Tamasese Meaole Hospital Moto’otua.

The second dose says Tagaloa is due to be on the roll out on 14 June for those who have already received their first doses.

“The target here is that we can vaccinate people of up to 6000 a week in each constituency,” Tagaloa says.

Marieta H Ilalio