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Full vaccinations start picking up

Guam's full vaccination tally went down considerably, from up to 1,800 a day in early March to only 200 or below in recent days.

On Tuesday, the numbers picked up again, with 1,380 additional people who got their second dose of either the Moderna or Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine and became fully vaccinated, as well as those who took the single-dose Johnson & Johnson Janssen vaccine.

This brings to 33,678 the total number of individuals who are fully vaccinated as of April 6, according to data from Krystal Paco-San Agustin, the governor's director of communications.

This means an average of 1,200 individuals need to be fully vaccinated daily for a total of 28,822, to reach Gov. Lou Leon Guerrero's goal of 62,500 full vaccination by May 1 to reopen the tourism economy and lift post-travel quarantine requirements.

"We remain confident in our goal to achieve Path to Half by May 1," Paco-San Agustin said Wednesday.

The Path to Half goal is getting 50% of all adults and those at least 16 years old – 62,500 people – to be fully vaccinated by May 1.

After that, by July 21, the goal is to develop herd immunity by getting at least 100,000 Guam residents fully vaccinated.

$1.9M assistance from CDC

As the vaccinations continue, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention awarded Guam $1.9 million to support expanding COVID-19 vaccine programs and ensure greater equity and access, CDC announced.

The award is part of $3 billion in funding that CDC has granted to 64 jurisdictions to bolster broad-based vaccine distribution, access, and administration efforts.  

'Rhythm to it'

Most of Guam's first- and second-dose vaccinations are at the University of Guam Calvo Field House that the Guam National Guard operates from Tuesday to Saturday.

The Department of Public Health and Social Services operates village, homebound and other vaccination events. Private clinics also offer COVID-19 vaccinations.

But even with all these vaccination clinics combined, recent days had less than 100 getting their second dose.

"There's a rhythm to it. In the beginning, it was all dose 1. Twenty-one and 28 days later, there is a rush for dose 2. They get prioritized so there is a lull in dose 1. Because of that, 21 and 28 days later, there is a lull in dose 2," according to Capt. Mark Scott, spokesperson for the Guam National Guard.

An additional 53,170 vaccine doses arrived during the weekend.

Scott said Tuesday alone, the UOG vaccination clinic administered 2,074 doses for both first and second doses.

DPHSS also held a village-based vaccination Tuesday at the Talofofo gym. It will hold another one Friday, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., at the Asan Mayor's Office.

'Vaccinated together'

Talofofo resident Irish Cing, along with her children, got their first dose of the vaccine Tuesday at the Talofofo gym.

"If it's working then we're going to get it. If it's helping people, then we will get it. So that's what we did," the mother said, after getting her first Moderna dose.

Her children, ages 16 to 20, also received their vaccines, primarily with their mother's convincing.

"But I know she just wants what's best for us, to protect ourselves from the coronavirus," son Jonathan Cing said. 

The mother said her whole family waited to get their vaccine together, including her husband of nearly 20 years, because they're still "worried getting out there."

"We waited until it came to our village. Thankful that they came here," the mother said.

Ruperto Perez III, a resident of Mangilao, drove to Talofofo on Tuesday to get his second dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine.

"Because (Tuesday) is my due date for my next shot," he said. "I want it completed on the date on the card."

Perez, a member of the Alaska Air National Guard, said he wants to protect his family from COVID-19 and getting vaccinated is one added layer of defense.

Perez said he just had his flu shot when the first opportunity to get the first dose came up. So he had to wait.

"To others, take the vaccine. It's free and it's going to help the community and the world," he said.

Here's a review of the Joint Information Center's data on cumulative full immunization:

  • March 7: 20,397
  • March 8: 21,945
  • March 9: 23,314
  • March 10: 25,199
  • March 11: 26,956
  • March 12: 28,157
  • March 13: 29,134
  • March 15: 29,373
  • March 16: 29,801
  • March 17: 29,986
  • March 18: 30,218
  • March 19: 30,475
  • March 20: 30,562
  • March 21: 30,735
  • March 22: 30,818
  • March 23: 30,911
  • March 24: 30,981
  • March 25: 31,060
  • March 26: 31,121
  • March 27: 31,171
  • March 28: 31,171
  • March 29: 31,178
  • March 30: 31,668
  • March 31: 31,737
  • April 13: 1,977
  • April 2: 32,177
  • April 3: 32,177
  • April 4: 32,206
  • April 5: 32,298

COVID-19 testing by Micronesia Mall

GovGuam also continues to test people for COVID-19. Testing continues Friday, April 9, from 9 a.m. to noon, at the Micronesia Mall parking lot, adjacent to Ross Dress for Less parking garage.

Haidee Eugenio Gilbert

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