Well over 2,000 tourism workers in Jamaica have been vaccinated using one of three vaccines made available to them at a number of strategic blitz sites organised by the new Tourism Vaccination Task Force, in its first three days of major activities.
“We are seeing the willingness of the workers [to be vaccinated] now as evidenced by the outturns that we have seen in the last three days since the programme has started,” said Tourism Minister Ed Bartlett.
Following on the vaccination of 1,200 workers at the Pegasus Hotel on August 30, over two days (September 2-3) Sandals Negril saw some 556 tourism workers taking their choice of vaccines, while at the Moon Palace in Ocho Rios on September 3, some 385 workers were vaccinated. However, Moon Palace had a previous blitz where 320 workers received the jab and to date 60 per cent of its staff have been vaccinated.
The goal is to vaccinate 170,000 tourism workers across the country. More vaccination blitz sites are to be set up in Negril, Ocho Rios, Montego Bay and the South Coast with the hope of vaccinating up to 600 persons per day at each.
“The intention is not to impose on the existing health infrastructure to enable this vaccination programme, so the doctors, nurses and all infrastructural arrangements are being provided by us through the coalition,” the tourism minister said.
He also made a personal appeal to workers in the tourism industry, their families and close friends to access these specially arranged blitz sites which are offering the AstraZeneca, Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson vaccines free of cost.
“We turn no one away,” Bartlett underscored.