THE FIRST, small batch of COVID-19 vaccines are not expected in Barbados or the rest of the Caribbean before March next year and supply to the region is already under threat from big countries snapping up doses through direct deals with manufacturers.
Word of this came last Friday from University of the West Indies (UWI) Professor Peter Figueroa, a member of the World Health Organisation (WHO) SAGE Working Group on COVID Vaccines, in an online UWI Vice-Chancellor’s Forum on COVID-19 Vaccination via UWI TV.
“Low and middle income countries are unlikely to get vaccines before March or April and it will be very little initially. We’ll get a bit more in the middle of the year and then we’ll get some more towards the end of the year,”
he said in his presentation on COVID-19 Vaccines: Access and Equity.
Figueroa reinforced his estimated timeline for regional countries relying on access to COVID-19 vaccines through the COVAX Facility during the question and answer segment, saying: “So, we just have to be patient, it’s coming.”