Australia and UNICEF have put forward assistance to Samoa’s fight against COVID-19 with the donation of over 100,000 Pfizer vaccines over the next three months, starting with the first batch of 70,200 doses delivered today to the Government.
In a joint statement issued today indicated that Australia aid of vaccines amounts to 111,150 doses of Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines to Samoa, through a partnership with UNICEF, to procure vaccines for partner countries in the Pacific by the end of 2022.
“Today, 70,200 doses were delivered to support Samoa’s national vaccine rollout, particularly for booster doses. Samoa is currently experiencing community transmission of COVID-19 for the first time, making the arrival of these vaccines all the more important.”
The Acting Director General, Tagaloa Robert Thomsen says the onset of Community transmission in Samoa has accentuated the importance of vaccinations as key to addressing the challenges of COVID 19.
“We are thankful to the Australian Government and UNICEF for the delivery of these doses, which will greatly support our booster program.
“We acknowledge the assistance of Australia and all our other development partners to ensure the efficacy and coverage of our COVID-19 response as we continue to work together to save lives.”
Australia’s High Commissioner to Samoa, Her Excellency, Emily Luck said Australia is pleased to bolster the Government of Samoa’s booster vaccination program through the delivery of these doses.
“We know from our own experience back home that a booster dose provides greater protection from severe disease.
“The timely delivery of these doses will further protect the people of Samoa now that the virus has made its way into the community. As we have throughout the pandemic, we stand ready to support the government in their response to COVID-19.”
UNICEF Pacific Representative, Jonathan Veitch stated the shipment of COVID-19 vaccines is critically important to ensure communities are protected, especially now that the virus is circulating in the community for the first time.
“We thank the Government of Australia for their partnership with UNICEF to deliver these timely lifesaving vaccines to Pacific families.
“UNICEF will continue to work under the Government of Samoa’s leadership to support their efforts to control the spread of the virus and protect their citizens.”
These doses of Pfizer vaccines will be used in Samoa’s COVID-19 booster programme and for primary course vaccinations.
Over 8,500 people have already received a booster dose. These vaccines will enable the Ministry of Health to continue to expand its booster campaign to comprehensively cover Samoa, ensuring that everyone can access boosters.