BASSETERRE, St. Kitts, August 31, 2021 (Press Unit in the Office of the Prime Minister) – The Ministry of Health is set to commence the administration of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine from tomorrow, Wednesday, 1st September, 2021.
This was confirmed by Minister of Health, the Honourable Akilah Byron-Nisbett in an interview earlier today (August 31), in which she stated that the ministry has completed all its necessary preparatory work, including the staging of a number of training sessions with nurses who will be administering the vaccine.
“We have been hosting quite a number of training sessions with our nurses to get them prepared for the administration of this vaccine. This vaccine is administered a bit different to how the other vaccine is administered and so the nurses just needed to be competent with the change in how the vaccine is administered but they are ready now to be able to administer the vaccine starting tomorrow,” Minister Byron-Nisbett said.
The Pfizer vaccine is approved for administration to children 12 years of age and older. As such, the Health Minister made a strong appeal to parents of children from that age to see this as an opportunity to add another layer of protection for their loved ones against the deadly disease.
Minister Byron-Nisbett said, “We are fortunate enough to now have a vaccine that has been approved for administration to children 12 and older, and so we want to encourage parents to use the opportunity to safeguard their children against severe illness and the possibility of death from COVID-19. We are cognizant of the fact that persons who have been vaccinated are indeed protected, as is the recommendation by the maker of these vaccines and so I want to encourage parents because now we have the opportunity to protect our children, have them immunized against COVID-19 and the effects that COVID-19 causes.”
The minister further noted that the Ministry of Health will be collaborating with the Ministry of Education to ensure that health officials are present for upcoming Parent-Teacher Association (PTA) meetings at the various schools “so that we can provide more information about the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine and answer any questions that parents may have or any concerns they may have, and so I want to encourage the parents that once the PTA meetings are called to make a special effort to attend so that you can hear more about the Pfizer-BioNTech.”
The Honourable Akilah Byron-Nisbett stated the Pfizer vaccine will be administered in St. Kitts and Nevis by appointments only “so that we are fully aware of the numbers that we will be vaccinating or administering to each day and allow us to be able to ensure that we have the correct quantity of vaccines already thawed and ready to be administered. So, I want to encourage persons to call their nearest health centers in order to set an appointment to have the vaccine administered.”
The reason for this is because the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine is stored at ultra-cold temperatures.
The Government of St. Kitts and Nevis received its first tranche of 11,700 doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine from the Biden-led U.S. administration on August 12.