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First batch of COVID-19 vaccine arrives in Samoa

Covid-19 vaccine bottles

Apia, SAMOA — The first batch of COVID-19 vaccine arrived in the South Pacific island nation of Samoa on Friday (Samoa time).

According to the Samoa Observer, over 20,000 vials of the vaccine, sourced under the World Health Organization-led COVAX facility, arrived at the Faleolo International Airport near Apia, capital of Samoa, on Friday afternoon. This for a population of over 190,000.

Interim Chair of the National Emergency Operations Center in Samoa Agafili Shem Leo said that upon the vaccine's arrival, the Samoan Ministry of Health would begin preparations for the rollout.

Health workers including doctors and nurses will be vaccinated first, followed by frontline workers before the wider population aged 18 and above.

Samoa recorded its first confirmed COVID-19 case on Nov. 19 2020.