Update | Ministry of Health strengthens vaccination campaign with mobile service | New

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The Department of Health and Welfare will step up its mobile COVID-19 vaccination service as it seeks to bring the vaccine to more Jamaicans.

Portfolio Minister Dr Christopher Tufton said the donation of two buses, worth AU $ 41 million, which have already been used, is an important tool in the government’s campaign to vaccinate at least 65 % Population.

The buses, which are a gift from the people of Yantai, China through the efforts of the Yantai Municipal People’s Government and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China, were officially handed over today in a virtual ceremony .

“The Jamaican government has set itself an ambitious goal … and the mobile buses will allow us to achieve that goal by getting the vaccine to people at their convenience,” Tufton said.

Tufton said the buses have so far visited 12 sites with five more sites scheduled over the next few days.

About 200 people were vaccinated at each stop, Tufton said.

Describing the mobile service as “a lifesaving tool,” the Minister of Health hopes this initiative will vaccinate more Jamaicans.

More than 80,000 Jamaicans have been infected and up to 1,800 dead since March 2020.

Tufton said that as of yesterday afternoon, more than 756,000 doses of the vaccine had been administered in Jamaica.

For her part, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade Kamina Johnson Smith thanked China for its assistance to Jamaica.

She said the donation would encourage new and creative approaches to improve immunization uptake, with the aim of boosting immunization rollout and “clearing our way to normalcy.”

REMARK: An earlier version of this story had bad Jamaican dollar value.

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