The V.I. Department of Health has received $1.6 million in grant funding from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Delegate to Congress Donna Christensen announced Thursday.
The first of two grants was $1,552,489 issued by the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases. This grant is part of an immunization program that addresses immunizations and vaccines for children in the Virgin Islands, according to Christensen’s news release. The grant is part of a cooperative agreement that is used for costs associated with planning, organizing and conducting immunization programs directed toward vaccine-preventable diseases and for the purchases of vaccine.
The second grant, in the amount of $59,657, comes from the National Center for HIV, Viral Hepatitis, STDs and TB prevention, and will fund part of the territory’s HIV Surveillance Project. The funds will be used for salaries of staff conducting surveillance and serosurveillance activities, travel related project activities and national planning participation, as well as supplies.
According to the Center for Disease Control’s website, serosurveillance is the ongoing and systematic collection, analysis, and interpretation of data about a disease or health condition. Collecting blood samples for the purpose of surveillance is called serosurveillance.
Additional information about either of these grants can be obtained by contacting the Department of Health on St. Thomas.