The Ministry of Health is currently monitoring the staff complement at various health institutions around the country, as unvaccinated frontline healthcare workers in some regions have been refused entry to the facilities. This move is in keeping with the gazetted COVID-19 measures for August.
Minister of Health, Dr. Frank Anthony, MP, made this disclosure during Wednesday’s COVID-19 Update.
Dr. Anthony said the Linden Hospital Complex is among those being monitored, as the Region has the lowest COVID-19 vaccination intake, with marked vaccine hesitancy among healthcare workers.
“We are monitoring the different departments there. We had some persons who were vaccinated and they were able to come to work and continue working as normal.
“There are lots of other persons [who] refuse to take the vaccine putting themselves at risk and of course, they didn’t come to work; they didn’t show up with a PCR. We continue to monitor to make sure that the services that we are delivering is not compromised.”
Minister Anthony said the Government is continuing to make efforts to ensure vaccines are available countrywide.
“We have seen a lot of persons who are reluctant coming forward and getting their vaccine and I think that is a positive thing.… We want people to be vaccinated because our staff, they are on the frontline, if you are a medical staff, if you are constantly in contact with the general public and you are offering service to the general public which puts you at risk.
“The best way you can reduce that risk really is to be vaccinated. So, we hope that our staff, those who are reluctant, that they seriously consider getting vaccinated. If they don’t want to be vaccinated, then they will have to get a PCR test and bring it to show they are not infected.”
Minister Anthony made it clear that the Ministry will not be bearing the cost of any PCR tests for unvaccinated workers.
On Wednesday evening, the Minister announced that healthcare workers, public transport operators and conductors will be given two weeks to comply with the Order.
As of August 1, persons conducting business at Government agencies are required to show their COVID-19 vaccination cards and identification cards before entering the premises. This measure has now been imposed on staff of both Government Agencies and Private Sector companies.