GEORGETOWN, Guyana – The Guyana government Monday announced that it is offering booster vaccines to people 18 years and older, even as it continued to urge citizens to come forward be vaccinated against the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic that has killed 1,006 people and infected 38, 160 others since March last year.
“So those previous requirements that we had where you have to be 50 years and older, we have now lowered that requirement to 18 years and older. So, once you have received two of those primary regimens, and now you’re six months after that, you can come and get a booster dose,” Health Minister, Dr Frank Anthony, told the daily COVID Update on Monday.
The announcement by the government comes as the world grapples with a new variant of the virus, called Omicron, resulting in many countries imposing new travel restrictions.
Figures released by the ministry show that 738, 995 doses of a COVID-19 vaccine have been administered, including first, second and booster shots.
The authorities said 403,537 adults have received a first dose of the vaccine, while 282,567 adults are fully inoculated. For those in the 12 to 17 age group, 29,458 adolescents received a first dose of the vaccine, while 20,659 of them have been fully vaccinated. In terms of booster doses, 2,774 shots have been administered since the campaign’s roll out.
But Dr Anthony said while vaccines is “the surest way” to protect against COVID-19, “we still see that there are a number of persons who can get their first dose but haven’t presented themselves as yet, and we want to encourage them to do so.
“Make sure you get your first dose and then come back for your second dose. There are persons who have already received their first dose but haven’t come back for a second dose. And we want to encourage them, as well, to make sure that they get their second dose,” he said.
Guyana said it is providing the AstraZeneca, Sinopharm, Sputnik V, Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson vaccines free of charge to its citizens.