by Kevon Browne
St. Kitts and Nevis (WINN): Just over 6,600 first doses to go and 17,700-second doses before St. Kitts and Nevis has used up the cumulative 41,600 doses of the Oxford/AstraZeneca Vaccines secured.
As of Saturday, May 15, 17,198 doses were administered, 3,042 of which were second doses.
According to the Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Hazel Laws, the current vaccines are expected to expire at the end of June.
“Ladies and gentlemen please note that the present batch of vaccines that we have, they have a limited shelf life. What does that really mean? They’re going to expire… by the end of June the present batch of vaccines will expire.”
Our vaccine of choice was the two-shot Oxford/AstraZeneca for a bevy of reasons including its safety, cost, and ease of storage.
Initially, Health officials in the Federation announced that we would be adopting a 10-week interval between shots because of the increased efficacy.
However, because of the shelf life of the vaccine and the rate at which the vaccines are being accepted, taking your first dose now would lead to getting the second dose 4 to 5 weeks later.
“A relative of mine, she received her first dose of the AstraZeneca/Oxford vaccine today and her appointment is the 30th of June and so it’s less than 10 weeks and… it’s because of the shortened shelf life of the vaccines… Please note that the vaccine interval can vary anywhere between one month to 12 weeks… given the shelf life of vaccines, if you come at this late stage we will give it to you but the interval will be shortened.”
Dr. Laws at the May 12, National Emergency Operations Center press briefing.