THA Secretary of Health, Wellness and Family Development Tracy Davidson-Celestine has said over 2,000 people in Tobago have received the covid19 vaccine to date.
She was speaking at the weekly post-Executive Council news conference held virtually on Wednesday.
On March 31, TT received 33,600 doses of AstraZeneca vaccines in the first tranche from the World Health Organization’s Covax facility. Of those, Tobago got 3,000 doses, enough for 1,500 people.
This was the second batch of vaccines to arrive in Tobago, as it received 200 doses in February, part of a gift of 2,000 doses to TT from Barbados. These were offered to 100 frontline healthcare professionals.
Davidson-Celestine said: “Of course, those persons who are vaccinated comprised in total, or in large part, rather, our healthcare workers, those who are over 60 and who are easily considered as persons at risk, and of course our essential workers."Essential workers also included teachers and members of the protective services, she said.
While there is still some hesitancy over taking the vaccine, the science must be trusted, she said.
“One of the things that you would note, and we have been saying it all long is that the vaccines at this point in time remains our only hope and it is the only thing that gives us really a fighting chance if we were to contract the virus.”
She said the country is in a worsening situation with regard to increasing covid19 cases in Trinidad as well as in Tobago and officials are trying to manage the pandemic in the best possible way.
“But at the same time, it just cannot be us in the health sector who are leading the fight with regard to managing the spread of covid19. You, as members of the public, also have a critical role to play in that regard, and I must emphasise personal responsibility.”
She said the aim is to ensure that 60 per cent of the Tobago public is vaccinated, and urged eligible people to register and get the vaccine.
“We encourage you, the members of the population, to continue to register. Use the app that we have circulated, and also you can come to any of our facilities...at Scarborough, at Roxborough and of course at Canaan/Bon Accord. Because we want to be in a position to vaccinate the majority of you on this island.”
She also said the second dose of the vaccination exercise for healthcare workers would begin to be administered on Saturday.
There were no reports of significant adverse reactions to the vaccine, she said.
She stressed: “For me, the only way that we can return to any state of normalcy is to ensure that we have the required level of immunity here on this island, and of course that would only happen if you were to be a part of the vaccines.”
She added: “My fear is that Tobago would be left behind when all others are moving forward with regard to the opening of the borders, and most importantly, if we are to return to the required level of vaccinations. For me, I want to see a situation where we are vaccinated at the levels that we want to achieve, because if not, if we are to open or when we are to reopen, we can have overwhelming situations here on this island. And so it is very important that we do our duty and to come forward and to be vaccinated.”
In its latest update, the division said there were four new cases on the island. The release said active covid19 cases had increased to 40. Deaths remained at two.
The number of samples submitted to the Tobago Regional Health Authority, the Caribbean Public Health Agency and other local testing sites is 4,207. So far, 226 people have tested positive.