Get Vaccinated To Protect Loved Ones, Especially Seniors, Says CMO Dr. Laws

Basseterre, St. Kitts, February 04, 2022 (SKNIS): St. Kitts and Nevis’ Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Hazel Laws, strongly encourages individuals to step forward to receive a COVID-19 vaccine or a booster shot as the Federation grapples with nine COVID-19 related deaths in two weeks.

The Omicron variant is the dominant strain currently in circulation in St. Kitts and Nevis. It is highly transmissible and the World Health Organization reports that elderly persons and those with underlying chronic conditions face an elevated risk of death compared to other groups. Unvaccinated persons face a higher risk of becoming severely ill or dying.

Nine persons have passed during the fourth wave of COVID-19, which began on December 24, 2021. The deaths were recorded between January 22 and February 01, 2022, according to statistics from the Ministry of Health. All of the deceased were over 60-years-old and were unvaccinated. They also suffered from comorbidities.

“I want to implore you, I am beseeching that you recognize your vulnerability, empower yourself with the latest information about the vaccines, and recognize that the vaccines do provide that layer of protection and it helps you to combat this virus,” Dr. Laws stated at the NEOC COVID-19 Briefing on Wednesday (February 2, 2022).

Thirty-seven persons have died since the virus arrived in the Federation in March 2020. Four persons were fully vaccinated, while 33 persons were unvaccinated. The deaths were spread out among several age groups. However, 29 persons or 77 percent of the deceased were 60 years or older.

Dr. Laws noted that the seniors who recently passed from COVID-19 contracted the virus “from loved ones in their social network… And so, we want persons in families in social networks to be careful when interacting with the older adults in your social network, especially those older adults who are unvaccinated because if they do become ill their risk of getting severely ill [or] admitted [to the hospital] is high,” CMO Dr. Laws added.

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