Gov’t to introduce prize draw for vaccines

| 05/05/2021 | 241 Comments
Cayman News Service
(L-R) Deputy Premier Chris Saunders, Premier Wayne Panton, Governor Martyn Roper, Health Minister Sabrina Turner and Tourism Minister Kenneth Bryan

(CNS): Government will be introducing a prize draw for people who get vaccinated to boost the numbers and use up the remaining 7,000 courses before the end of their shelf life at the end of June. The PACT held a press briefing Wednesday that focused on the new government’s first priority, which is getting Cayman vaccinated against COVID-19 before it’s too late. Chief Medical Officer Dr John Lee stressed the need to increase the vaccine take-up, which is currently at 57%, before the borders can open safely.

Premier Wayne Panton stressed that his government would continue the conservative approach to opening the borders, and Deputy Premier Chris Saunders, the new finance minister, noted the stress the economy is under with the tourism sector still closed, He said returning the country to any degree of normality would depend on more people getting vaccinated.

Panton, who has already been vaccinated, said the remaining members of government who had delayed getting their shots because of the election campaign will be getting their first dose at the airport clinic on Saturday morning in a special vaccine drive, which will mix entertainment and the launch of the ‘vaccine means prizes’ as government begins an intensive effort to get Cayman vaccinated.

Dr Lee confirmed that his team is now in discussions with Public Health England regarding the use of the Pfizer vaccine for children between 12 and 16 years old following the clearance for that age group in both the USA and Canada. As soon as Cayman is given the green light, parents will be invited to bring their eligible children for the vaccine.

Health and Wellness Minister Sabrina Turner spoke of mobile vaccine services to encourage people to take the shot and said that, as the numbers increase, she was working on regulation changes for the quarantine protocols She said she was hoping to eliminate the pre-arrival test, which people currently must take three days before travel, for those who have already been vaccinated here when they travel and return home.

Opening borders will put the community at risk, and Dr Lee stressed that, given the “wild card” of variants of the disease and the unknown effectiveness of even the Pfizer vaccine against them, as well as the potential need for boosters later in the year for the older strains of coronavirus, he wanted to see Cayman use up the entire stock it has as soon as possible and before discussions about opening the borders can begin.

Check back to CNS tomorrow for more on the press briefing, and what was revealed about public finances and the emerging shape of the new government.

Watch the full press briefing on CIGTV below:


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Category: Health, health and safety, Politics

Comments (241)

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  1. Just me. says:

    The main reason people should have a choice is because this is a trial. If you take it you are part of the testing and there is a good reason that these test are usually at least 2 or 3 years long. Also many people can not tolerate the chemicals in many medicines and food and so should not take it. But I also see from the comments most of you could care less if some one else is harmed from the vaccine, Covid, or anything else. I understand your disrespect and hatred.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Does anyone really want a return to mass cruise tourism? I’m all for borders reopening and stay over short vacations, but the masses? Can we take this opportunity to limit our cruise guests to the small luxury yachts and similar?
    There has to be a way to achieve that and also employ any that may suffer? Remember the cruise companies were taking most of the money out anyhow…I’d rather give $100 to a dive operator knowing it stays here than $100 to book it in a ship knowing RCCL keep 75$ of it

    Etc
    Oh, and get the Pfizer vax if you can, it’s really hot gonna hurt you

  3. Anonymous says:

    I want neither prize nor jab. Keep them both.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Like they did for the ministries?

  5. Anonymous says:

    Keep the borders closed !!!

    The variants will run rampant and take out the old, young and weak !!!

    No more tourists ! No more tourists ! No more tourists !

    But seriously it is nice to have peace and quiet here like the good ole days. Enjoy it while it lasts.

  6. Michel Lemay says:

    I am amazed at some of these comments. Many want to reopen but find every excuses not to take it. Others took the vaccine and are not in a rush to open. Some see it as a game others take the vaccine seriously. Some of the comments and i am reading under anonymous, the majority by the way. What does keeping from taking the virus have to do with anonymous. You ain’t going to lose your job over it, you just don’t want the people who you are. Say what you mean and mean what you say !.Stand up and be counted… many speaking total nonsense. United we stand and devided we fall. I would like to know what a person really think with a common sense reason. Onna really want to open? Well be smart about it and you most likely don’t get as sick if you tske the vaccine. What about your parents, grandparents, your children. Common man serious thing. Every places that open back up had to shutdown again. So let’s get it right the fist time. Soo… what’s it gonna be ?

  7. Anonymous says:

    Once UK government confirms that kids between 12-16 can take the vaccine, say goodbye to any remaining stock as these kids (who have more sense than adults) will be lining up to get inoculated…

  8. Anonymous says:

    You can’t shelter people from life forever.

    Set a deadline to get the vaccine, either you get it or you don’t. If you don’t, it’s on you, you can’t possibly say you were not informed.

    Open to borders on that date, and done!

  9. Anonymous says:

    I miss John John.

    • Anonymous says:

      Yep. Because Jon Jon was smart enough to know he didn’t know anything. So he listened to the health experts and Dr Lee. Hence why we did well. The PPM listened to the science.

      Unlike the Trump US government who got in the way of science because the “optics” weren’t good for PR.

      So honestly, we were better off with Jon Jon.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Notice they won’t definitively say the borders will open even if we reach the goal of 75-80%.

    And it’s exactly why I won’t take the vaccine until we get a date.

    More games…

    • Anonymous says:

      You have a few more weeks left and then your window will run out. Good luck.

      • Anonymous says:

        How would the world see Cayman if they knew they wasted the vaccines when others stand in lines for hours and wait days/weeks to get a vaccine?

    • Anonymous says:

      Hopefully you don’t get taken out by Covid…

      • Anonymous says:

        Oh, the disease that is so virulent, you have to be tested to find out if you actually have it. That one?
        Hopefully freedom of speech is still alive?

        *CNS: It’s really exhausting that anyone is still posting comments like this. It’s been known from the time this coronavirus emerged that many people will have it but not show any symptoms but are still able to spread it. That is precisely why it is so dangerous and why testing is so important.

        • Anonymous says:

          my thumbs up was for CNS btw

        • SSM345 says:

          CNS, this poster reminds me of those who commented on the daily Govt updates incessantly about things confirmed 42elewenteen times before they logged on but couldn’t be bothered to read, yet take Trump for word of God.

        • Anonymous says:

          All those dead people burning on makeshift pyres in India didnt seem to have a problem in working out they got it.

        • Anonymous says:

          Thank you CNS. It is tempting to suggest that you add ‘idiot’ and ‘troll’ buttons beside the like and dislike buttons.

    • Anonymous says:

      That was my plan too, but then I realized that I would kick myself if there wasn’t anymore available to me at that time or if I would then have to pay for it. Take advantage of the opportunity when it presents itself as you may regret it when its too late.

    • Anonymous says:

      You playing the game Bobo; good luck.

    • Anonymous says:

      The vaccine is experimental and how can the Governor tslk about vaccine passports when they brought the vaccine here as experimentsl.

  11. Anonymous says:

    I am hoping that government will come up with better ideas than a raffle for increasing the number of people vaccinated. People I know say that practical access is the problem. In the UK they have started doing mobile vaccinations using re-purposed ambulances and vans. From the Guardian today:

    “A new “vax van” delivering Covid-19 vaccines to hard to reach communities has been rolled out by an NHS clinical commissioning group in Essex to boost uptake in areas where vaccine scepticism is high.”

    • Anonymous says:

      Just pay them 50 bucks a shot and they will be lining up. People here love free money.

      Look at how well the last administration did at giving away government funds by claiming to help the local farmers in need with supply vouchers. Everyone has become a farmer to get the $400.00 dollar per month credit, buy up all the supplies that we bonafide farmers need. You know what’s scarey is that the chemical container is empty and these chemicals are now in the hands of these new pretend farmers cause they bought them just because they had free government moneys. Give them money and they will take the shot.

  12. Mikey says:

    Come see the prize lol a whole chicken and 2 fruit cakes, for a jab that if you get in contact with covid you can still be severely affected.

  13. Anonymous says:

    Living in Gibraltar and having visited Cayman numerous times all i can say is that the vaccine works and is the only way to get back to some normality. The entire population of 30000 and 10000 cross frontier workers have been vaccinated. Not one covid case since 4/5 weeks ago. We have an open border that is to say that spanish residents and other tourists can cross over for the day etc. Gibraltarians travel into Spain which as a country is not as well vaccinated for the day of for a short break. All business are up and running. The vaccine works !! Cant wait to visit Cayman again. It is possible 🙂

  14. Anonymous says:

    Why is there a need to offer prizes? If at this point persons have not been vaccinated its because they have made a decision to take the risk with covid19 rather than with the vaccine….and that is their right. But why should their decision impact those who have gotten vaccinated? If they (non vaccine takers) don’t have any concerns about getting covid19, and those who have gotten the vaccine are no longer at risk, who is the government protecting? What’s the end game here? What happens if 75% still hasn’t been reached by the time the vaccines on hand expires? Do all of us get penalized with continued border closure while more prizes are offered to the resistant? At present it is adults who can get the vaccine, so it’s adults making decisions about their health, if they want to take the risk let them, but don’t let the decisions of some impact the lives of all. Also, why are residents of Cayman who have been fully vaccinated in Cayman required to quarantine at all still? Doesn’t make sense.

    • Anonymous says:

      Because of the potential impact on the healthcare system if there are thousands of people non-vaccinated.

      • Anonymous says:

        the stats don’t back up your argument. 90% of the at risk groups are vaccinated. the risk to the healthcare system is now less or the same as seasonal flu

    • Anonymous says:

      spot on. if people don’t see any benfit of taking this vaccine….why will they bother take the next one or the next booster shot.
      why are we letting the actions of the ignorant minority punish the people who have taken steps to protect themselves and others….?????
      the inmates are running this asylum.

    • Anonymous says:

      You do know that the variants will be an issue right?

  15. Anonymous says:

    I’ll take it when Julianna does.

  16. Megalomatt says:

    What risk does a vaccinated person (VP) have from an unvaccinated person (UP)? If a UP can infect VP with COVID, then the vaccines are not effective. If the vaccines are effective and VP is immune, the why not just let nature take its course thin the herd by killing off the unvaccinated? It seems this would make everyone on the left extremely happy.

    • Anonymous says:

      1. Border.
      2. Opportunities for virus to mutate in the unvaccinated, with impact on the effectiveness of the vaccine.

  17. Anonymous says:

    Worlds gone mad, people lapping up vaccines for a disease that won’t hurt them. The same people who don’t do anything during flu season but have no problem visiting the frail and elderly in winter! Worlds gone mad.

    Anyhow, the Chinese are giving it another go at taking us out…their rocket is on target to come back to Earth uncontrolled on the 10th May and we’re in the flight path….is there any vaccine for this that was developed rapidly i can take before i put back on my 5 masks and spray my fruit in detergent

    Really…we were spraying our groceries in detergent.

    WTF is happening? We’re all nuts

    • Anonymous says:

      I suggest that you stop ingesting whatever it is that you are taking and seek professional help.

      • Anonymous says:

        I think this is the guy I overheard at Fosters telling someone that TRUMP was the best US President ever…

    • Fellow nutcase says:

      10.33am Use some rocket science and spray yourself in detergent.

    • Anonymous says:

      “a disease that wont hurt them…” tell that to the 230K dead Indian citizens

    • Anonymous says:

      You are wackadoodle even by today’s standards.

    • Anonymous says:

      I’m in my 40’s and am not yet “eligible” for the vaccine in Jamaica. There was a two-day window to get it before some vaccines expired in April, but since then it has only been offered to over-60’s.

      4 people I knew died of Covid in April. 3 weeks ago a relative of mine who was 52 died of Covid here in Jamaica, and a week later a relative’s in-law died from it. He was 65. I don’t know what you typed there but 2 people that I knew and loved died in the space of two weeks.

      Take the vaccine.

    • Anonymous says:

      If you want to talk crap do it on your fb wall. The rocket will mostly burn up before small parts land in the ocean. If it hits us than we must all buy a lottery ticket cause that’s some wild odds.

  18. Anonymous says:

    Gov’t won’t reopen the borders until %70-%80 vaccinated but it is clear we can’t get to that total (hence the attempts at bribery). Ritz closing down for 6 months. No way they would do that on the eve of reopening.

    Those who wanted the vaccine have gotten it. Those who were against it may now decide that they are not really so against it when there are prizes to be had….

    Will the prize pool be sufficient to allow us to get the remaining vaccinated numbers? CIG is counting on it.

    It is sad and somewhat embarrassing when the world is literally dying to get this vaccine that we nonchalantly disregard it. CIG should move the end use date of current stocks up two weeks and at least send our remaining supplies to those island neighbours sensible enough to appreciate and use it.

    When high season rolls around in November we can revisit the entire border opening question again….for now sit back, grab a drink and watch the dump burn (yet again).

    • Anonymous says:

      The Ritz was due for a room by room upgrade. They could go floor by floor, or just get it all done in one go. September and October are the slowest travel months, so get it done an re-open in November after bringing back staff.

  19. SSM345 says:

    Caymanian Privilege:

    A Govt having to offer its citizens incentives to get a life saving vaccine for free while in other parts of the world people are dying because their Govts do not have access to it. And same people are the ones complaining to the heavens that the borders need to open.

    You can’t make this sh*t up.

  20. Anonymous says:

    No port, no vaccine.

    • Anonymous says:

      Enough already, Alden…Wayne already said no port so go get your vaccine..

      • Anonymous says:

        Alden was amongst the first to be vaccinated, along with Dr. Lee and the governor. Credit where credit is due, he led from the front in that respect.

        • Anonymous says:

          Unlike other members of the PACT who seem to only now see the importance of the vaccine…

  21. Anonymous says:

    Miss universe is “essential” travel? Asking for a friend.

    • Anonymous says:

      About as essential as Christmas holidays were, or shopping trips to Miami still are – and no shortage of those.

  22. Anonymous says:

    This island continually harks on about it being a “seafaring nation” and how all it’s men “went to sea” well so did I and when I went you had to be vaccinated. I forget now for what but one was yellow fever and you had to have a “passport” book signed and stamped by the health service, so come on all you Caymanian ex-seaman start jumping up and down and get all the people you know who haven’t got the jab down to the airport.

    • Um... says:

      Thought the airport site was now closed…?

    • Anonymous says:

      Agree. And all those people who love to travel if you go to certain countries you have to be vaccinated for lots of diseases from malaria to yellow fever to cholera and they all happy to get those jabs cos they’re going on exotic holiday yet you don’t want the COVID vaccine which is not just for yourself but for everyone in your community. SMH

  23. Anon says:

    The Government made the decision to get all those vaccines! Don’t turn this around and make people who had no involvement in these decisions feel guilty! Us, the people, were never consulted, nor were we involved in that decision making! Man up and grow some balls and own it. Don’t turn it around and make it our fault that you now have a surplus of 14,000 vaccines and that if we waste these, then we may not be able to get anything again.
    Terrible use of psychology. You should be ashamed of yourselves.

  24. Anonymous says:

    There is alot of anger, personal opinions etc. in these responses. There is no one size fits all solutions. I am fully vaccinated but I’m not going to put down others that for their own reasons do not want to get vaccinated. A waste of energy. The US is offering incentives to get people vaccinated and ask yourselves why? Ask yourself why do some countries go on crazy lockdowns to stop the spread. A part of it could be the cost of health care is a greater burden on the government than the ripple effect to the business community. The leaders aren’t going to articulate this so we figure things out for ourselves. This is not just about saving lives its economically driven and political driven. We can’t stay closed for the rest of the year and at some point government will have a decision to make and they won’t please everyone with the decision. The virus is endemic so we have to co-exist and some will die while others will be fine. The reality is we are and never will be safe. We have to live life to the fullest we can as none of us are immortal. If I was 80 and in poor health I would still take the vaccine so I could hug my grandkids as my time on earth is limited. Personal choices people but stop hating on both sides.

  25. Anonymous says:

    Do you have to be a moron to enter the prize draw or can those of us who already got the vaccine enter?

    If not, do you expect us to get the booster shots before we are eligible for the autumn round of bribes?

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