Training for COVID-19 vaccine administration expected in two weeks

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Training for health care professionals who will administer the COVID-19 vaccines is expected to commence in two weeks.

This was announced by Minister of Health, Dr Frank Anthony during the COVID-19 update on Thursday.

The Minister said the government is putting systems in place to ensure the country’s healthcare system is prepared to store and administer these vaccines.

“We have experienced staff in the field who have over the years been doing vaccinations… we have a number of persons around the country who are already trained to do vaccinations and keep records so what we are now going to train them on is the anticipated use of the COVID vaccine and what would be required to transport and store it as well as the side effects.”

Meanwhile, Minister Anthony stated that while the World Health Organization (WHO) has issued a conditional recommendation against the use of the drug Remdesivir, the local guidelines committee will decide whether the drug will continue to be part of the treatment for COVID-19 patients.

“Because these clinical trials are the more accurate way of judging whether a medication works or not, the findings from these trials are then incorporated into guidelines. It is the same for Remdesivir,” he said.

Dr. Anthony explained that a clinical trial for the drug in the United States showed that it reduced the hospital stay. However, the “Solidarity Trial” which was conducted by WHO and included thousands of persons from across the globe showed no significant change. As such, the international organisation does not recommend the use of the drug in the treatment of COVID-19.

Minister Anthony said it is now up to countries to determine whether they will use Remdesivir.