MINISTER of Health, Dr. Frank Anthony, has said that, in spite of the delays in getting the second dose Sputnik V vaccine, persons should not be afraid to take the first dose or any other vaccine to protect themselves against the deadly novel coronavirus (COVID-19).
During Tuesday’s edition of the daily COVID-19 update, Minister Anthony said there is a worldwide shortage of the vaccine; however, the latest news from the Russian Direct Investment Fund states that persons who took the first dose of Sputnik V will be protected for an even longer interval.
“We also have the Sputnik V vaccine, and we have administered quite a lot of that to people and I know a lot of people are waiting on the second dose vaccine, so that is something that we are working on and hopefully we will be able to resolve that shortly.
“The Russian Direct Investment Fund, had advised that you can prolong the interval between the first and the second dose up to 90 days. Now, there is more recent advice published by Reuters on July 9. They are indicating that you can actually go up to 180 days. So, [with] that interval, a lot of people who have taken their first dose would not have exhausted that long interval,” Minister Anthony related.
The Health Minister said the government is working to procure more second dose vaccines for the approximately 80,000 persons who are waiting.
“So, I would encourage people to continue to get their first dose because we are going to address this; everybody who took the first dose would be able to get their second,” Dr. Anthony related.
Up to Tuesday, 337,030 adults or 65.7 per cent of the adult population had taken their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, while 175,037 persons or 34.1 per cent are now fully vaccinated against the disease.
Another 18,862 adolescents or 25.9 per cent of persons between the ages of 12 and 17 years have been administered the first dose of the Pfizer vaccine.