The Northwest Territories welcomed its first shipment of Covid-19 vaccines on Monday, a late Christmas present of 7,200 doses.
“Hiring, communications, and logistics are key activities that must be complete before immunization can begin to ensure a safe, equitable roll-out,” the territorial government said in a brief statement.
“Priority residents will start receiving their first dose in January 2021.”
For now, the doses received on Monday are being held at Yellowknife’s Stanton Territorial Hospital as they await distribution.
The NWT’s vaccine rollout plan, promised for some time, remains to be made public.
However, the territory’s chief public health officer has previously spelled out, in broad terms, who should expect to receive the vaccine first.
Priority will be given to four categories: Elders, those with pre-existing medical conditions, essential workers, and residents of remote Indigenous communities – especially those with minimal healthcare, such as places without a dedicated nurse.
In total, 51,600 doses of Moderna’s Covid-19 vaccine are set to arrive between now and March 2021 – enough to vaccinate 75 percent of NWT residents aged 18 and over.
The vaccine requires two doses, four weeks apart.