When the COVID-19 vaccination campaign kicked off last year, Region 2 was ahead in the vaccination race, ranking second place in the country. Today, the region ranks 8th in the country, with a mere 53% of its adult population fully vaccinated.
This disclosure was made Monday morning by Minister of Health Dr. Frank Anthony in Anna Regina, Region 2 where the Health Ministry in collaboration with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and UNICEF launched a two-day workshop to tackle the issue of vaccine hesitancy in that part of the country.
The objective of the workshop is to identify and counter motives behind vaccination hesitancy and key to the process are health care workers, community, and religious leaders who are among the participants of the two-day event.
Health Minister Dr. Frank Anthony termed it ‘silly reasons’ behind persons not wanting to take the vaccine. “When you ask people why you don’t want this vaccine, they tell you all sorts of things. People say if they take the vaccine, they will turn into a monkey. I took the vaccine and I didn’t turn into a monkey. Then they tell you vaccines are the mark of the devil, or that they will be infertile.”
He went on to say, “These things were manufactured to protect your health. Because of the invention of these vaccines, millions were saved. We have to see how we can improve our records in Region Two because this region was once leading the other regions.”
There are reports in other sections of the press about the country returning to a fully-opened status soon as that seems to be the intention of direction in which President Irfaan Ali is looking.