Health Minister takes COVID ‘injection’, appealing for vaccine

… As COVID goes into hospital, deaths increase

AMID a marked increase in COVID-19 deaths and the number of people who have been hospitalized with more serious symptoms of the disease, COVID-19, Health Minister, Dr. Frank Anthony, has called on all eligible Guyanese to take the vaccine. On Tuesday morning, Dr. Anthony received the first dose of the recently acquired Russian Sputnik V COVID-19 vaccine, alongside his wife, Dr. Shanti Singh; Adviser to the Minister for Health, Leslie Ramsammy and Ministry of Health Permanent Secretary Malcolm Watkins.
“People feel I am hesitant to take the vaccine so I want to dispel that myth and make sure people can see that I have taken the vaccine and now if that prevented them from getting the vaccine, they can come on board and get theirs, ”said Dr. Anthony told reporters, after he took the vaccine.
He also contacted that he wanted to ensure that many of Guyana’s frontline healthcare workers received their vaccines before he took it, adding that Guyana had been able to obtain many doses of the vaccine and was expecting much more. Clinical trials have shown that this Sputnik V vaccine has an efficacy of about 92 percent. Guyana also introduces the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine from India and the Sinopharm vaccine from China. Meanwhile, during its daily COVID-19 update, it reminded the public that the Ministry of Health had issued several warnings about the increase in COVID-19 deaths and the number of people in hospital with severe symptoms of the new coronavirus, recently.

Shanti Singh receives her COVID-19 vaccine (DPI Photo)

He stressed, however, that these obvious incidents can be prevented with the vaccine.
“We can reduce deaths, we can reduce the number of hospital admissions if many people take their vaccine,” the health minister advised, adding: “That’s shown around the world because we see in countries where the prevalence of high-risk immunizations and hospital stays has decreased. ”
He said the vaccines had gone through the necessary stages of trials and reviews before they were approved and had been used by millions of people, with little adverse effects. As such, he called on all Guyanese, who are eligible to receive the vaccines [those persons 40 years and older and all health care workers], to visit their nearest vaccination site for vaccination. The Ministry of Health currently has vaccination sites in each region, along with mobile teams moving from community to community in a bid to increase vaccination. In fact, there are expected to be 100 vaccination sites throughout Guyana, as the ministry aims to vaccinate 40,000 people this week.
Dr. noted that Anthony stated that partnerships with community and religious organizations have been instrumental in increasing uptake of vaccines. He urged more of these organizations to partner with the ministry to strengthen the nationwide vaccination campaign.