CIG waits for UK advice on COVID booster shots

| 27/08/2021 | 37 Comments
Cayman News Service
Premier Wayne Panton and Governor Martyn Roper at last week’s press conference

(CNS): The Cayman Islands Government has indicated that it will be guided by research underway in the UK when it comes to decisions regarding the rollout of COVID-19 vaccine booster shots. Officials have said that the public health authorities in England are expecting a report on the Pfizer booster shots in just over a week, and once than information is available, the decisions made in Britain are likely to be reflected in Cayman.

Speaking at the press briefing this week, Governor Martyn Roper said that boosters shots would be available here at least for the vulnerable before the October border opening, when the risks of COVID-19 spreading into the community significant increase.

It is around eight months since the national vaccine rollout started in the Cayman Islands and the question of booster shots for people vaccinated early is being asked in several countries, including the Cayman Islands.

“The UK’s Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency has been assessing the evidence for boosters and the best vaccine to use,” Roper said, adding that the UK Government will be relying on the anticipated report to finalise its plans for a booster rollout.

“It may initially only be for highly vulnerable groups,” the governor stated. “We can expect that whatever programme is put in place for the UK will be mirrored here. Immunity does appear to wane with the Pfizer vaccine, increasing the risk of mild infection in those vaccinated. But there is no evidence it causes serious illness or death. If there was evidence, the UK would be moving much faster in the rollout of boosters. The Pfizer vaccine still offers extremely effective protection against that.”

There is currently no need to be overly concerned about booster shots and there is time to roll out boosters well before the 14 October opening, Roper said, adding that he expects Cayman to be part of the booster rollout in September.

Health Minister Sabrina Turner said her ministry is waiting for the release of the key studies in how best to use boosters, but she said the CIG had been reassured by the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office that we will be able to access boosters appropriate for those determined to be the most at risk groups

Cayman currently has around 8,600 shots of the Pfizer vaccine left, which expire at the end of October. With more than 2,000 of those earmarked for second doses, there is enough vaccine left for another 3,000 people to get the first double dose course, which government is hoping will be used up before what is now being positioned as the key opening date of 14 October.

But Premier Wayne Panton warned that if Cayman is still sitting on thousands of unused vaccines that look as though they are going to waste, there is a danger of the free supply from the UK Government drying up.

“If the United Kingdom sees that we have used the vaccine they have given us for free, they will probably supply more for additional injections and eventually boosters,” he said. But if not, there may not be any additional free vaccines or boosters.

“If that occurs, that will mean that you will have to pay for your own vaccination, as private businesses move to ensure that their employees and vendors delivering their goods are vaccinated and as government insists that work permit holders and those who renew work permits are fully vaccinated before working on our shores,” Panton warned, as he urged everyone who has not yet rolled up their sleeves to come forward now and get the vaccine.

The issue of booster shots is proving to be yet another controversy surrounding the global management of this pandemic. As wealthy Western nations prepare to roll out the boosters to bolster community protections in high risk groups, especially against the extremely infectious Delta variant of this coronavirus, poorer nations are struggling to get their hands on first doses.

The US Food and Drug Administration has already cleared boosters for those with weakened immune systems and is expected to clear other groups for a third shot shortly. But the issue is still dividing the medical community as there is still a lack of evidence that a third dose would create significantly more protection. Given the uncertainty, they argue, the vaccines would be better used in countries where they remain scarce. 

The US has been accused of hoarding vaccines as third world countries struggle to secure a supply, which in turn puts everyone at risk.

Earlier this month the World Health Organization called for a global moratorium on booster shots. Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus recently said that WHO wanted to see a delay to allow at least 10% of people in every country in the world to be vaccinated.

“To make that happen, we need everyone’s co-operation, especially the handful of countries and companies that control the global supply of vaccines,” he said. The WHO wants to have 40% of the world vaccinated by the end of the year, and get to 70% by mid-2022. In higher-income nations, more than half of the population has already received at least one shot, the WHO said, while some low-income countries have only just managed 1%.

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Comments (37)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Delta! Delta airlines, come in over lol you people too funny!!

  2. Anonymous says:

    Study out of Isreal 59% of hospitalizations were fully vaccinated.

    Unvaccinated population 20%. That puts efficacy against hospitilization at about 21% better than doing nothing but my math could be off.

    *CNS: Your maths is off Unvaccinated people are 29 times more likely to be hospitalized with Covid
    Read this: COVID: the reason cases are rising among the double vaccinated – it’s not because vaccines aren’t working

    A million 3rd dose boosters were administered which reduced hospitalizations in triple vaxxed by 50%. They seemed thrilled with that stat. Remember we started at 95% efficacy, I don’t even remember against what…infection, hospitalization or death. Obviously those were the good ‘ol days if they ever were…

    One thing that seems to remain constant is the overall survival rate of 99.7% by doing absolutely nothing.

    What ever you decide to do, vaxed, unvaxed, triple vaxed, if you test positive don’t wait for extreme illness to set in. Treat symptoms immediately with known and safe therapeutics through your doctor. XXXX

    CNS: “Through your doctor” are the operative words here. Do not self-medicate. Do not listen to talking heads on Fox News or idiots on Facebook. Listen to your doctors who are looking at the actual science.
    Mississippi Is Pleading With People To Stop Using A Livestock Drug To Treat COVID-19

    • Anonymous says:

      The LA county study doesn’t make the Israeli study math wrong. Two different studies. But you know that. The Israeli study suggests precisely that the vaccines aren’t working as well as hoped, hence the need for a 3rd shot.

      CNS: I left this this link, which I don’t think you read, because it gives a good explanation why in places like Israel where there is a high vaccination rate a lot of hospitalized people are double vaxxed. None of the Israeli studies concluded that doing nothing was better than getting vaccinated.

      Yes, we’ve been following their results, the waning effects of the vaccine and the need for booster. So your last sentence is correct.

  3. Anonymous says:

    CNBC has reported in the U.S. alone 4,100 fully vaxx people are in hospitalized and 750+ fully vaxx are dead from covid and this was reported mid July

    CNS: When studies find that a vaccine is, say, 95% effective against hospitalizations or death, that still means there will be a few who are vaccinated who get very ill or die. However, your chances of getting very ill or dying are greatly reduced. This is why almost all of those in hospital are unvaccinated. Almost all is not all.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Reading comments by Facebook toilet time readers on here is really alarming. But once they are affected personally the tune will change. Just like the morons begging to be saved in Texas and Florida.

    • Anonymous says:

      I think a toddler has more advanced mental development than you are. Juvenile, at best, comment.

    • Anon says:

      So true. People around the world begging for vaccines on their death bed. Too late. And idiots here have turned down a free jab since January. As stupid as stupid can be

    • Anonymous says:

      This is the stupidest comment I have ever read. But being here on CNS comments it should not take too long for someone to one up you.

  5. John Bridger says:

    Given the data from Israel we cannot open until everyone has had a booster shot or we could have a similar experience to theirs.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Until we gather evidence a booster at 12 months like flu may be good and thereafter decision by antibody status and variant status as in Flu vaccine development.
    We r in good shape. Let us continue.

    • Anonymous says:

      We? Are you a scientist?

      • Anonymous says:

        Didn’t you get the memo? Everybody is a scientist. That’s why they feel justified in their absolute hatred of others and conviction of their views.

        … because of the plethora of *cough* research they’ve all done.

  7. For conversation says:

    I know it’s could’ve, should’ve and would’ve when we didn’t but it’s not too late.

    The vaccines should be for the vulnerable and the healthy people go up against the virus.

    If you contract the virus three things may happen:
    – caught and expel it and you are fine, no symptoms.
    – caught it and your body produce antibodies while displaying symptoms.
    – get seriously ill and may need hospitalization.

    They say get vaccinated to protect the vulnerable, this is no longer valid.

    I underestimated grace but was over prepared for Ida. Then It occurred to me, I need to get my health ready as I have done for Ida.

    Cayman should be an important case study.
    It is highly vaccinated as some other countries, yet no spread of the virus as in those countries.
    The reason is obvious here but we cannot stay close forever.

    Regardless of vaccination status, being healthy and getting healthy will be our main defense against the Delta variant.

    • Joe B says:

      Only if you are one of few who have faith in yourself. for everyone else they must have something man made and mob certified. You and I are too healthy to worry about what is now the most important thing in most peoples lives so now we have to worry about what they will do to us.

  8. Anonymous says:

    How many boosters will we need ? Will we need a booster shot every 8 months, or every year or 2 or 3, does anyone have a clue ?

    • OMG says:

      This is why the remaining 30% of people are not taking the vaccine. They are given you something and don’t even know how last it. OMG. Why don’t you eat something you don’t kmow because someone told you it is good. Know what you are putting in your body. LHM.

    • Anonymous says:

      In for a penny, in for a pound.

      Nobody has the answer for your questions, because it is unknown. You only know that once initiated, you have to keep participating.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Ugh, I don’t know why I read this drivel. Japan and Israel now producing conflicting studies. We don’t even know if new arrivals are carrying the Delta. And where is Lee – the only person with presentation skills?

    It’s for this, and all the other reasons/information/misinformation, that I’m out.

    Take your jabs/boosters/ivermectin/rainbow tea water whatever. Just get on with it.

  10. Anonymous says:

    When 82.7% of the imaginary population has received their booster shot, we will consider opening the border. Maybe.

    • Anonymous says:

      The more you disparage, the longer we will wait.

      In Cayman, 5:59pm we call that a slow grind….

  11. Anon says:

    There should be a cut off of September 1 for first jabs, so people can get second 3 weeks later and then see full effects of the course by October 14. That way anyone stupid enough to have not got their first jab by sept 1 can face the consequences of their selfish careless actions and we can use the remainder to c9mmence boosters in September,

  12. Anonymous says:

    I already took two vaccines. I AM NOT taking a booster shot

    All that booster shot means is we will continually be taking booster shots. Anyone with half a working head. Can see this.

    • Anon says:

      Suit yourself but your post makes no sense, I would pay for a booster tomorrow. Why not give yourself maximum protection available?

      • Anonymous says:

        So no alcohol, tobacco, sugar or fast food.

        Regular exercise, organic foods

        Thought not

    • Anonymous says:

      Ever heard of the annual flu shot? Seriously

    • Anonymous says:

      Sounds like your head is working at all. You sound like one of those people that only took one shot so that they could win something in the raffle..a bit cray cray if must say so myself.

  13. Anonymous says:

    I aint taking no more shots, thats it.

    • Anonymous says:

      Have fun with covid! It can be painful.

    • Anonymous says:

      Then please leave the island. You are free to
      Leave and not rock the rest of us that live and work here currently and are happy to get vaccinated

    • Anonymous says:

      Given your vocabulary, you are probably not the sharpest knife in the drawer.

      “I am not taking anymore shots; that’s it.”.

  14. Anonymous says:

    Boosters would be a real shot in the arm!

  15. Anonymous says:

    Why doesn’t Panton understand that the majority of those 3000 doses are never going to get taken up by the hold outs, anti- vaxers, and make believers amongst us?

  16. Anonymous says:

    I think very soon the uk will approve boosters at about 8 months after second shot, this is perfectly timed when you think the sensible ones amongst us who went as soon as they were available and had second jab in March, means we will get our booster in November when the island is fully opened. Great news.

    • Anonymous says:

      It should be 6 months. The Israeli study proved that 6 months is best which means that we should be getting our booster now. They are opening in October not November. I got mine in February. I have also read that it starts to wane in 4 months. With the Delta variant, we need to get those boosters now.

      • Anonymous says:

        I suggest a moderate crowd. Placards would be a nice touch, and will look good for the news video which won’t be shown.

        What do we want??


        When do we want it?


        If you do this, be sure to tell everyone to keep their placards, as they’ll be useful again.

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