Grenada’s Minister of Tourism Clarice Modeste was among hundreds of tourism, hospitality and other frontline workers who received their first dose of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine on Monday.
She said the turnout was a sign of “the start of a rebirth of the sector that affords a livelihood to hundreds”.
“It was really reassuring to see the number of persons who turned out to be vaccinated. This will assist us in restarting our tourism and travel sector. That sector, as you know, employs hundreds, and once we can get that sector up and running the economic situation will be different for all,” Modeste said.
The Tourism Minister, who is a medical doctor by profession, said she was confident the vaccine “will not only assist in resuming operations for the tourism sector but other sectors that are either directly or directly linked to tourism”.
Meantime, Minister of Health Nickolas Steele said the turnout demonstrated the significant uptake in Grenada’s strategy to living in a world where COVID-19 is endemic.
“It shows that the workers understand what is at stake and why they need the protection for us to reopen the hospitality sector,” said Steele, who was among the first ten people to receive the injection.
“The only solution right now, not just in Grenada but around the world, is getting vaccinated, and I am pleased with the turnout. Based on the numbers on the first day, 350 were vaccinated and an equal number is already registered for Tuesday,” he added.
The national vaccination process will be conducted on a first-come, first-serve basis and will run until February 26. The current targeted frontline workers receiving the vaccine are: law enforcement officers such as police, customs, and immigration; port/dock workers; airport workers; hotel employees and certified taxi operators.
Grenada is scheduled to receive 45,600 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine through the COVAX Facility, but earlier this month received 3,000 doses which were part of a gift the government of India gave to Barbados and Dominica.