Medical personnel at the drive-through testing site for COVID-19 in St. Eustatius in October 2020. (File photo)
ST. EUSTATIUS–The St. Eustatius Public Health Department is currently putting together the final touches on the implementation plan for the vaccination of residents against COVID-19, Deputy Government Commissioner Alida Francis said during an information session.
The Public Health Department is working in close collaboration with the Ministry of Public Health, Welfare and Sport and the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment RIVM in the Netherlands to start the vaccination programme in St. Eustatius and Saba mid-February 2021.
A delegation from the Netherlands will visit Bonaire, Statia and Saba this month to discuss and approve the implementation plan, which is to include logistics and communication. “It is very important for us to start providing the community of St. Eustatius with information on which persons can individually make informed decisions,” Francis said.
She said that several important issues need to be looked at with regard to logistics, such as the proper and safe storage of the vaccines, the location where the vaccines will be administered and the training of medical personnel.
The public entity launched a communication plan about the vaccination programme on Friday, January 8, with the distribution of a question-and-answer sheet.
Francis said that in recent months many persons have been asking questions about the vaccinations. The public entity, the Public Health Department and the Government Information Service have compiled these questions and have been seeking the answers, which will be communicated via informative videos and information provided by medical epidemiological experts.
Registration for vaccination is another important part of the implementation plan. “At a later stage, the public will be informed further leading up to the mid-February scheduled date for the actual vaccinations to start,” Francis said.
On behalf of government, she thanked the community for their patience as they finalise the implementation plan “to help the public to be able to make an informed decision.”
With regard to the vaccinations a public meeting of the Central Committee of the Island Council is expected to take place on Thursday, January 14. The meeting, which is scheduled to start between 4:00 and 4:30pm, will immediately follow a closed-door session of the Central Committee at Vincent A. Lopes Legislative Hall.
Source: The Daily Herald https://www.thedailyherald.sx/islands/statia-putting-final-touches-to-vaccination-programme