Beautiful Virgin Islands

Monday, Feb 06, 2023

Unvaccinated persons, slow uptake in Pfizer boosters a concern

Unvaccinated persons, slow uptake in Pfizer boosters a concern

Health Minister Carvin Malone has expressed concern about the pace at which persons in the territory are moving to get vaccinated.
In a post on the Minister’s Facebook page recently, Malone described the pace as “slow”.

He stated: “I remain concerned about the extremely slow uptake of the Pfizer vaccine booster shots and the number of persons unvaccinated in the BVI.”

In the most recent epidemiological summary released by the Health Ministry, it was shown that 17,267 persons had been fully vaccinated against the coronavirus while some 1,577 persons had been listed as partially vaccinated.

According to Malone, reports throughout the world speak of the need to reduce hospitalisations and deaths through the administration of vaccines.

He further noted that the BVI’s golden gems – a nickname he has given to the senior citizen residents of the territory – as well as its children are those deemed to be the ones who are most at risk.

“As the world continues to drop all precautions, it is more critical than before that each of us does our part and vaccinate,” Malone added.

In his post, the Health Minister referenced an article carried by the neighbouring US Virgin Islands Daily Newspaper which stated that the US death toll from COVID had reached the 900,000 mark and was sped up by the Omicron variant.

Meanwhile, Acting Chief Medical Officer Dr Ronald Georges endorsed the minister’s sentiments in a recent release and continued to advocate for persons to be vaccinated.

“Developing immunity through vaccination will reduce the risk of severe disease particularly among the vulnerable who are more at risk of more severe disease and complications of COVID-19,” Dr Georges stated.

The Chief Medical Officer explained that people at increased risk of developing severe illness from COVID-19 include older or elderly adults and people with underlying medical conditions such as asthma, hypertension (high blood pressure), diabetes, pulmonary, liver or kidney disease, as well as those who have immunocompromised such as persons on treatment for cancer or who are on immunosuppressive medications.

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