According to recent statistics released by provincial health ministry and First Nations Health Authority (FNHA), almost 1,900 doses of Moderna vaccines have been distributed to eight remote First Nation communities within the Island Health region.
According to the data provided, six Nuu-chah-nulth First Nations spread along the west coast of Vancouver Island received a total of 1,070 Moderna vaccines.
Ahousaht First Nation received 520 doses, followed by 110 for Ehattesaht/ChinehKint and Nuchatlaht, 110 for Huu-ay-aht, 140 for Kyuquot Chekleseht, and 190 for Mowachaht/Muchalaht.
Namgis First Nation in Alert Bay received a total of 770 vaccines.
Klahoose First Nation, based on Cortes Island, which also battled a COVID-19 outbreak in November received 60 doses for its membership.
Health authorities had announced earlier that 10,700 doses of Moderna will be been made available for rural and remote First Nations communities in the province.
To date, 5,300 of those Moderna doses have been distributed to 18 rural and remote First Nations communities in B.C. Most health authorities received the vaccines between Dec. 28 and 31 as there was a delay in the initial Moderna shipment.
Vaccination drives have been underway in most First Nations communities since Monday, with many leaders stepping up to take the first doses of the vaccines to ease concerns of vaccine-averse members.
The First Nations are receiving the Moderna vaccine because the first approved COVID-19 vaccines in Canada – the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine – requires subfreezing temperatures for storage (-70) challenging transportation and storage logistics to remote communities.