(GIS)  A COVID-19 Vaccination Challenge event at the Owen Roberts International Airport on Saturday, 8 May resulted in 1,138 vaccination doses being given throughout the day - with 734 being first doses and 404 being second doses.This brings the total number of vaccinations received in the Cayman Islands to 71,807 to date, meaning that 59% of the population has had at least one dose and 51% are now fully vaccinated.The Vaccination Challenge, which is being coordinated by the Ministry of Tourism, & Transport, is aimed at encouraging as many residents as possible to get vaccinated before local vaccine stocks expire on 30 June.The challenge continues through 9 June, which is the last possible date for first doses to be received.Everyone getting vaccinated during this time period is being entered into a prize draw, which offers prizes including Cayman Airways airline tickets, staycations, and more.Minister of Tourism & Transport Hon. Kenneth Bryan received his first vaccine dose at the event, and urged his George Town Central constituents and all residents who have not yet been vaccinated to join him in this Vaccination Challenge.Discussing why getting vaccinated against the disease is so important, Mr. Bryan said, The first and most important is to keep us all safe. We are dealing with a global pandemic, I think it is fair to say that everyone knows the seriousness of what this can do to human life, and ailments.  But most importantly after that is keeping our economy going.This is part of the ultimate goal in the long term - to safely open our economy. As you know, tourism is our second pillar and a major revenue earner and in order to continue to provide for the people of this country we need that revenue but putting safety first. So, we think that these are some of the first steps to getting there. The medical advice has told us that when we get to around 80 per cent that we can start making the necessary steps to safely open the borders.  So, safety first, economy second and making people get back to work and money flowing back into our economy.Mr. Bryan explained that the Vaccination Challenge is an additional incentive for people to do the right thing and thanked the local business community for supporting the initiative, revealing that over 500 prizes have been donated.He also had words of thanks for the many people working behind the scenes to roll out the vaccination programme.Details of the COVID-19 vaccination schedule can be found at https://hsa.ky/public-health/coronavirus/ Photo caption: (L to R) Dr Hazel Brown, HSA Chief Nursing Officer; Dr John Lee, Chief Medical Officer; Ms Lizzette Yearwood, HSA Chief Executive Officer