Covid in 2021
As the end of 2021 fast approaches, the whole world, including Dominica, is looking out for the impact of Omicron, the new Covid -19 variant that is said to be much more transmissible.
Nations across Europe and elsewhere are moving to impose tougher measures to stem a new wave of COVID-19 infections spurred by the highly transmissible Omicron variant.
"As case numbers escalated, alarmed ministers in France, Cyprus and Austria tightened travel restrictions," TIME magazine wrote over the weekend. "Paris cancelled its New Year's Eve fireworks. Denmark closed theatres, concert halls, amusement parks and museums. Ireland imposed an 8 p.m. curfew on pubs and bars and limited attendance at indoor and outdoor events"
As Dominica approaches 50 deaths due to Covid, it is easy to forget that the country had its first death just five months ago.
On August 17, 2021, Dominicans learnt of the passing of 46-year old Kathlyn St. Hilaire, who was admitted to the COVID Isolation Unit in Portsmouth on August 14.
According to Health Minister Dr. Irving McIntyre, she suffered from pre-existing medical conditions, which placed her in the high-risk category.
In the latter half of 2021, Dominica experienced a huge spike of Covid 19 cases probably due to the Delta variant. Dominica had its first Covid case on 22 March 2020.
On Sunday 20 December 2021 had recorded 6,430 cases; there were 401 active cases and 44 deaths due to Covid 19.
More than one year into the Covid-19 pandemic, the world was grappling with the highly transmissible Delta Variant that has caused a renewed surge in infections in countries from the U.K. and the U.S., to those in Africa and Asia. Delta arrived in Dominica on…
But during 2021 Dominica was facing another crisis- vaccine hesitancy. Hundreds of health care workers, in particular, in Dominica were not COVID-19 vaccinated and many said they won't take the jab.
"I've done enough research to know that this vaccination is just another scam by the pharmaceutical companies and I will not be putting it in my system," one of the district nurses in the Portsmouth Health District stated to the Sun.
Similar alarming sentiments, the main argument of online conspiracy theorists, have also been shared by several other health care workers who spoke to our reporter, with a high number of them willing to walk away from the job if ever the taking of COVID-19 vaccines become a requirement of their jobs.
The striking number of unvaccinated staff caught the attention of management who on August 23, 2021, launched a "vaccination initiative" to at least get the figures of vaccinated health care workers here up to 63%.
The Sun has learnt that in December 2021, the figures had not changed significantly.
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