After Guam, the CNMI received its first shipment of COVID-19 vaccine shots from Pfizer/BioNTech early Thursday.
According to CNMI health officials, vaccinations will start this weekend.
The vaccine shipment arrived at around 5:45 am Thursday via a United Airlines flight, according to an update from the Commonwealth Healthcare Corporation.
Upon arrival, the vaccines were transported to CHCC and stored in an ultra-low temperature freezer.
The FDA-authorized vaccine began to ship out to all 50 states and U.S. territories early this week.
The vaccine will be available through a 3-phased approach and will be administered in two doses, 21 days apart.
According to CHCC, the first shipment is for PHASE 1 and it will be administered to healthcare staff, responder agencies, and private clinics providing health-related services.
Vaccinations for phase 1 will start on Saturday.
Phase 2 involves essential workers such as private pharmacy staff, public school instructional and support staff, school administrators, and child care workers.
Phase 3 is for the general population and children under the age of 15.
The 3-phased approach is in line with the COVID-19 vaccination plan approved by Operation Warp Speed and the US Department of Health and Human Services. The phased approach will be implemented based on priority and vaccine availability.