Anti-vaxxers “not useful” during current pandemic – Health Minister – Guyana Times
HomeNewsAnti-vaxxers “not useful” during current pandemic – Health Minister
Health Minister Dr Frank Anthony has stressed that while anti-vaxxers may have their reasons for opposing vaccines, their stance is not favorable during the current pandemic when the Government is trying to protect its people from a virus n endanger life. During one of his recent coronavirus updates, the Health Minister reminded that vaccines were designed to offer high protection against the virus. If a vaccinated person catches the virus, it stops them developing a more serious form. While the Guyana vaccination program has been seeing successes, there has been a slower number in Region 10 (Upper Demerara-Berbice). “Globally there is a set of people who, for whatever reason, are against vaccination. From time to time, they would create campaigns and try to get people to not take their vaccines. They may have their reasons for doing so but it’s certainly not useful in a pandemic because we know the COVID vaccines developed to prevent COVID-19 are very effective. “One of the things these anti-vaxxers have been saying is that these vaccines have not been properly tested. Well, these vaccines are the most tested vaccines in the history of the world, because apart from the clinical trials they have gone through, millions of people around the world have received different types of vaccines, ”he underlined. He added that if there were any problems with the vaccines, it would have already been detected with the millions of people who have taken it since. Apart from clarified safety concerns, he also explained that some people have questioned the level of protection these shots offer. To this, the Minister assured him that it would prevent serious infection and in addition, reduce the death toll. Dr Anthony highlighted, “Once again, we have found that the vaccines are protective because they prevent people from getting the more serious form of the disease. Some people may get a mild infection, some may have a moderate infection and some may get a serious infection … We’ve seen those people who are seriously infected, a percentage of them would die. These vaccines would help prevent that from happening. ” This week, the goal is to administer 40,000 shots and the Minister shared, “Our teams have been training. We now have a lot of people available to us and in addition to that, the army has assigned 400 people to work along with the vaccination team. These people are going to improve the work we do … With how many people we have now, I think we can achieve that easily. ” With stakeholders such as the Central Islamic Institute of Guyana and Guyana Hindu Dharmic Sabha partnering to stimulate vaccine uptake, the Minister said that this arrangement is available to any service organizations willing to come on board the ship. There are 100 fixed and mobile sites spanning all administrative regions, where people over the age of 40 and healthcare workers can have their own vaccinations. “We have some fixed sites so you can go there any day and the vaccination teams will be working there. In each region, we have created static sites and have publicized widely where those sites are in those regions. Then we have mobile teams and those would move from community to community, getting people in those communities to come out and get their vaccination. With those mobile sites, we’ve been partnering with a number of organizations, ”the Minister detailed.