Over 3,000 people have received the COVID-19 vaccination since the rollout on January 3, with health officials expecting another shipment of Moderna vaccine from the United States next month.
Gaafar Uherbelau, Ministry of Health’s Emergency Operation Center’s (EOC) Deputy Incident Commander yesterday said a total of 3,048 people have been given the first dose of vaccine as of January 23.
There were about 6,096 doses of Moderna that are in the first and second batches of deliveries, with health officials resting this week to prepare for the second dose jabs which will begin on Feb. 1.
Uherbelau also said that by February, Palau is expecting another 2,800 doses of vaccine adding that monthly deliveries are also anticipated.
In his inaugural address last week, President Surangel Whipps Jr. reiterated the country’s gratitude to the United States for the vaccines.
“And we remain COVID-19 free thanks to the generous, tireless assistance of the United States. We remain COVID-19 free because the United States, for the purpose of COVID-19, has treated Palau like one of its own. From the US CARES Act to the vaccines, we are administering each day, the United States has never forgotten Palau,” Whipps said.
He is optimistic that with the US’s continued friendship, Palau can be one of the first countries in the world to recover from the pandemic impacts.
“Through partnership and vigilance, we have kept our people safe from this deadly pandemic. We have become one of the last countries on earth to remain COVID-19 free. Now, it’s time to become one of the first countries on earth to recover. It’s time to get our people vaccinated,” he said.

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