American Samoa set on achieving a 90% vaccination rate
In the wake of a small Coronavirus outbreak of 8 cases, American Samoa has decided to focus on getting the rest of its population vaccinated. Given that the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the Pfizer vaccine for children ages 5-11, they are also included in the most recent push to get the entire population of the territory inoculated against the virus as soon as possible.
On Friday, November 26, 2021, the Department of Health held a news conference during which they announced a 2-day vaccine drive on Tutuila island. It will focus on 3 critical districts on the island. The government and its partners, local schools and villages, will work during the first 3 weeks of December to get as many children on this island vaccinated as possible. Each day of the drive will focus on a different group of the island, with the first day focusing on schools, and the second on villages.
The focus of the vaccine drive is to ensure that American Samoa surpasses the 90% vaccination rate. Dr. Francine Amoa, a Department of Health pharmacist, outlined this as the goal, highlighting the fact that despite 12 months of vaccine availability for the population of American Samoa, only 67% of the territory’s population is fully vaccinated. Additionally, she updated the media on the effort to vaccinate children ages 5-11. As of Friday morning, slightly more than 70 children had received their first shots, and no negative side effects had been reported.
To answer any questions, the Department of Health will host informational sessions for parents or guardians. During these sessions, officials will explain the vaccination plan, dates, and times, along with the documents that parents need to sign for their children to get vaccinated. They will also emphasize the importance of a parent or guardian’s presence while their child receives the shot. There will also be time for questions.
American Samoa is set on achieving a 90% vaccination rate and is implementing policies and plans that will get them there.