Statement by CMO on Progress of Vaccination Programme
Vaccination will bring widespread benefits to our community:
- our most vulnerable will be protected from the infection as the virus cannot get a good hold
- individuals won’t pass the virus to those most vulnerable
- If you get infected, the vaccine offers high protection against moderate to severe disease, hospitalisation and death
- the chances of getting ‘long COVID’ after even a mild infection (where symptoms persisting for months or years) will be hugely reduced
- studies from Israel have shown that protection from high vaccination will even benefit children
- travel abroad will be safer
- allowing travellers into the Cayman Islands will be safer
- large scale outdoor gatherings will become a far safer prospect
- and, as the world improves, the duration of quarantine will reduce further and hopefully will no longer be required.
The vaccination programme in the Cayman Islands started on 7th January 2021 and since then, Public Health and their teams have:
- provided 65,497 jabs
- given 35,429 people at least one dose
- given a complete course of vaccination to 30,068 people.
Based on a population of 65,000, this means we have vaccinated 55% of our total population (one dose) and 67% of those over 16 years of age. Through the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office of the United Kingdom, we have been provided around 90,000 vaccinations which is enough to give 45,000 people a course of two injections. Our last scheduled delivery was on 7th April, and the last batches expire at the end of June 2021. Peak demand for first doses of the vaccinations has declined considerably from its height in March, but the Owen Roberts International Airport site will remain in operation for a few more weeks for our final drive (please check for the schedule details at https://www.hsa.ky/public-health/coronavirus/ or by contacting the Public Health Department).
We have good vaccination rates for people over 50 years of age, but for those between 16 and 50 years old, the rate is 44%. The country is looking forward to the borders opening, and to make the population safe, we need to have widespread coverage of all those eligible.
Vaccination is very safe. Although many people have side effects for a day or two, and often only after the second dose, the risks of getting seriously ill or dying from COVID-19 by far outweigh the minor side effects that some people suffer. In Brazil during April 2021, more than 50% of intensive care beds were occupied by patients aged less than 40, and we know that Variants of Concern are affecting the young more.
COVID-19 is raging around the globe but the Cayman Islands has the precious resource of vaccinations – let’s not waste this gift in the face of the world’s gaze; people are desperate for vaccinations in countries where patients can’t get enough oxygen and respiratory support.
Our last scheduled delivery of vaccines will expire at the end of June so your first dose needs to be by 9th June. Please come forward to protect yourself, protect the community and do the right thing.
To read more about the benefits of getting the COVID-19 Vaccine, please visit