BY MAVIS N PODOKOLO
THIRTEEN thousand doses of AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines offered by the government of Australia arrived in the country on Friday last week.
The AstraZeneca doses were manufactured in Australia.
According to Pauline McNeil, permanent secretary to Ministry of Health and Medical Services, the AstraZeneca doses were shipped into the country following approval from the National Medicine and Therapeutic committee to use AstraZeneca produced in Australia.
McNeil said the 13-thousand AstraZeneca doses will be rolled out at the Western border to cover front liner essential workers and for those who are eligible to be vaccinated “noting the concern of cases continue to increase in Papua New Guinea
“We thank the government of Australia to be able to deliver 13 thousand AstraZeneca doses,” she said.
McNeil said 28,800 more AstraZeneca doses are to arrive in country next Friday. This will be made available through the support of the Government of New Zealand where go through the COVAX facility mechanism.
On the same note, she adds, vaccination roll out plan for provinces is still ongoing.
“The operational team at the Ministry of Health and Medical Services have collected provincial plan and budget for other provinces because eventually they want to vaccinate all people who are 18 years old and above.
“The team is headed by Dr Yogesh. They have worked very hard to map out roll out schedule for other provinces.
“I thank provincial health directors who have worked hard to support the vaccination roll out plan as well as the ongoing response effort of the country.”