Couva Hospital and Multi-Training Facility, the main Covid-19 Hospital in T&T. AZP News/Azlan Mohammed
By Prior Beharry
TRINIDAD and Tobago can store 1.4 million doses of vaccines.
This was revealed by Minister of Health Terrence Deyalsingh at the virtual presser of his ministry on Monday.
He said there was a stratified policy to deal with vaccination for Covid-19. And storage was part of this policy.
The minister said construction of a chiller to store vaccines has been completed that the Couva Hospital and Multi-Training Facility.
Deyalsingh said this facility could store one million vaccines.
He said, “We never had that capacity before.”
Deyalsingh said C40 in Chaguaramas and hospitals at Arima and Point Fortin each have capacity to store 120,000 vaccines with space for another 60,000 in Tobago.
This means that there is capacity for 1.42 million vaccine doses in T&T.
The minister reiterated that T&T will only use Covid-19 vaccines that were approved by the World Health Organization.
He noted that WHO approved the PfizerBioNTech vaccine on December 31, 2020, the Oxford AstraZeneca one on February 15 and the Johnson and Johnson jab three days ago on March 12.
The minister said some countries were using non-approved WHO vaccines.
“And that was their right as a sovereign state,” noting people must have trust in the vaccine and the policy of using WHO-approved vaccines has served T&T well for 50 years.
Deyalsingh said T&T will received vaccines from the COVAX facility to vaccinate 20% of the population in the first instance and 30% overall. He said T&T’s vaccines from COVAX will be from an approved lab in South Korea.
He said the ministry has been in formal bilateral talks to obtain vaccines since October 1, last year from manufacturers.
Deyalsingh said T&T was also pursuing to get vaccines from CARICOM through the African Medicines Council.