A matured village couple made a beeline for the vaccination centre next to the Pulenu’u Offices in Apia, when the injections finally opened to the general public this week.
Naasona Va’a is a 60 year old father and grandfather with his wife Fautuaga are from the village of Tuana’i.
The vaccination campaign started at home this week, but they had family business in Apia and they decided to get a vaccination injection while in town.
Va’a was still rubbing his arm after the injection yesterday, while tell Newsline Samoa how thankful he and his wife are that they are finally vaccinated.
“I wanted to have my vaccination injection to show my full support for the campaign against the measles epidemic,” Va’a said.
While he was in town, his village home folks were lined up at the EFKS Church hall for vaccination from 9.00am – 12.oo mid day.
The vaccination team moves out to the family homes for the remainder of the day from 1.00pm-5.00pm.
“ I didn’t want the vaccination team to come to my home, personally I was fully committed to take the injection.
“Anyone who feels for the children who had died and fear the risk of spread the virus to the healthy children, should get vaccinated.
Va’a did not remember if he received any vaccination injections when he was young but knew there were none given when he was a young boy growing up.
“Every time I’m at home I feel for the children and I can only bow my head and pray for the Lords protection on them.
“I never took it seriously when they first started giving advisories about how infectious the disease is until the reports of the children dying and I started to feel for them.”
The 60 year old said he kept going to the hospital to be vaccinated but told there was no vaccines, he tried again but was told the priority was given to the children.
He knew of the general public vaccination on Monday but felt it was going to be too crowded so he planned to do some family business in Apia and get vaccinated in one of the locations they kept showing on TV.
His 56 year old wife Fautuaga said that he too had wanted a vaccination injection as soon as possible.
“ I was worried about my grandchildren, I didn’t want them to catch the measles off me.
“When they were having the children vaccinated I made sure all my grandchildren received their injections.”
Fautuaga said as a mother she prayed for the safety of her grandchildren because she could not bear losing anyone of them.”
She remembered being vaccinated when she was young but wanted to be injected again.
There is also a rule she has made where no one outside her family is allowed into their home for the children’s protection.
All visitors have to stand outside and talk from there.