…serious actions against persons forging vaccine cards – Health Minister warns
The Health Ministry on Friday reported that three more persons who tested positive for the novel coronavirus have died, thus taking the country’s death toll to 422.
For June, 24 persons have died thus far. May was reportedly the deadliest month, with 99 deaths.
However, the latest fatalities are a 97-year-old woman from Region Four, a 72-year-old man from Region Six, and a 65-year-old woman from Region Five. They all died while receiving care at a medical facility.
In addition, the Ministry stated that 108 new cases were detected and the new statistics showed that the total confirmed positives moved up to 18,196.
There are 21 patients in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU), 102 in institutional isolation, 1541 in home isolation and three in institutional quarantine. Since the pandemic started, a total of 167,085 individuals were tested – of which 8944 males and 9252 females were positive.
From the new cases, one was detected in Region Two (Pomeroon-Supenaam); three from Region Three (Essequibo Islands-West Demerara); 24 from Region Four (Demerara-Mahaica); six from Region Five (Mahaica-Berbice); 41 in Region Six (East Berbice-Corentyne); 27 in Region Nine (Upper Takutu-Upper Essequibo) and eight in Region 10 (Upper Demerara-Berbice).
There were no new positives in Regions One (Barima-Waini), Seven (Cuyuni-Mazaruni), and Eight (Potaro-Siparuni) and cases remain at 1157, 1230 and 370, respectively.
Meanwhile, Health Minister, Dr Frank Anthony has warned that stringent measures will be taken against anyone found culpable of forging the COVID-19 vaccine certificate – a document issued by health officials after a person is immunised.
It was outlined that the forging of vaccination certificates is a serious crime and anyone guilty of such an act will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law. This position comes on the heels of reports that a Region Six woman was arrested and charged for allegedly forging a vaccination card.
“I guess the Police would have to do their investigation to see whether this is so or not. We are going to take very stringent, serious actions against persons who try to forge these certificates because it’s a really serious matter. If you’re not vaccinated and you then tender some document to pretend that you have been vaccinated, then you should face the full brunt of the law. You’re putting yourself at risk and you’re putting others at risk. Therefore, we have to take serious action against this,” Dr Anthony shared.
Dr Anthony expressed that the Guyana Police Force is investigating the matter, but officials will be on the lookout for future instances similar in nature. This is especially since it can jeopardise the country’s immunisation programme.
“It would also put our entire vaccination programme in disrepute if people are going to try to forge these certificates. So, we are on the lookout and we are going to take serious actions if we find anyone violating or trying to forge documents and things like that. In this particular instance, the Police would do their investigation and I’m sure they will do the necessaries.”
Regional statistics show a 52.3 per cent immunisation in Region One; 41.7 per cent in Region Two; 44.5 per cent in Region Three; 45.8 per cent in Region Four; 48.2 per cent in Region Five; 52.4 per cent in Region Six; 43.9 per cent in Region Seven; 28.4 per cent in Region Eight; 42.1 per cent in Region Nine and 13.2 per cent in Region 10.