NIA CHARLESTOWN NEVIS – – Premier Hon. Mark Brantley says the recent shipment of Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines donated by the United States Government will help local authorities resume the vaccination program for adults and will also be used to start the inoculation of children 12 years and older in St. Kitts and Nevis.
“This donation of Pfizer vaccines now makes it possible for our children 12 years and over to be vaccinated. This gives our health professionals another important weapon in the fight against the deadly COVID-19 virus. I urge parents to have their children vaccinated and ensure that they are protected.
“As we face another looming crisis of variants, including the dreaded Delta variant, in this ongoing battle against COVID-19…our innocent children, the future of our country, are now on the frontlines and falling victim to this virus in ever increasing and ever alarming numbers.
“I am very happy that our Government continues to be guided by the science and is resolute that we cannot and we shall not leave our children exposed to the ravages of this dreaded disease. We shall shortly be rolling out our plan to ensure that a significant number of our children can access vaccines against COVID-19 so that, like the majority of our adult population, so too a majority of our children can be protected,” said the Premier.
The shipment of 11,700 doses of the donated vaccines arrived in the Federation on August 12, 2021.
St. Kitts and Nevis is among the first six countries to be allotted vaccines as part of the US Government’s donation of 837,000 Pfizer vaccines to Caribbean nations. The Bahamas will receive 397,000 doses; Trinidad and Tobago, over 305,000 doses; Barbados, 70,200 doses; St. Vincent and the Grenadines, 35,100; and Antigua and Barbuda, 17,550 doses.
Premier Brantley, who in March 2021 initiated the regional lobbying for the United States to donate vaccines to the Caribbean people, thanked US President Joe Biden and his administration for the gesture of goodwill. He said the donation came about as a direct result of a regional diplomatic effort.
“Working closely with the United States of America, St. Kitts and Nevis was among the first of six CARICOM countries to receive doses of Pfizer vaccines donated by the United States as a direct result of regional diplomatic engagement with the US government. Our Prime Minister Dr. [Timothy] Harris and other regional Heads, as well as our Honourable Minister of Health Akilah Byron Nisbett, Attorney General Vincent Byron Jr. and their teams must all be commended for their hard work in getting us to this point.
“Diplomacy is often quietly undertaken without much fanfare but this donation of life-saving vaccines demonstrates the truism that diplomacy matters,” said Mr. Brantley, who also serves as Minister of Foreign Affairs in the Federal Government.
He said the fight against COVID-19 has always been an all of society response, one that will now include the younger members in the society.