Booster shot access expands as COVID cases mount

| 20/10/2021 | 74 Comments

(CNS): With the Delta variant of COVID-19 behind the increasing community spread in Grand Cayman, which is now well beyond the confines of the school system, the Health Services Authority is inviting the over 50s to get their booster shot if they need it. While the vaccine still protects against the worst effects of the Delta version of SARS-CoV-2, breakthrough infections are more common, especially for those who have completed their two-dose course more than six months ago. A booster is seen as the best way for older people and those with co-morbidities or immunity issues to stay safe against the increasing spread.

Over 1,150 people have now had a booster but with no vaccine clinic at the Lion Centre yesterday, only 18 more people had their first dose over the last day and just 42 had their second shot of the COVID-19 vaccine.

There were another 17 new cases Tuesday from a batch of 997 tests, as the Public Health Department continues its full-scale testing, given the number of contacts. Just three were in travellers and the rest were community transmissions. Officials did not say whether or not the cases were adults or children.

Chief Medical Officer Dr John Lee confirmed that of the two people currently in hospital, one is the patient admitted back in September and the second is a middle-aged man who has other health problems. Both of the patients are stable and neither require help breathing.

Government has not yet released the number of active cases of the virus, which had reached a new high of 226 on Monday, or how many people are symptomatic, which has recently been running at well over 50% of cases. The number of those in isolation, which had also peaked yesterday at 1,555, had not been released as of Tuesday evening.

See the vaccine schedule on the HSA website here.

For more information on vaccines contact the HSA Communications team at
communications@hsa.ky

See here for more information on securely verifiable vaccination records.

Anyone with flu symptoms is urged to stay at home in the first instance and contact the 24 hour Flu Hotline or your general practitioner to speak to a health professional about those symptoms before visiting the flu or testing clinic.

Flu Hotline: 1-800-534-8600 or 345-947-3077 or 345-925- 6327 or email flu@hsa.ky
Callers will be screened for travel history and advised on what to do next.


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Comments (74)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    I just waited over 1 hour at WB District Clinic. Per the published schedule (in this CNS article – “click HSA website here”) – booster vaccines were at WB clinic Oct 21, 5 – 7pm. NOT!

    At 5:05pm I was able to get someone at the Flu Clinic and they said the team were enroute, probably delayed by traffic. Cayman time, we laughed! Ha, ha!

    At 5:30pm I called again and ooops, sorry. WB Clinic schedule is actually Oct 28. “It’s right there under the 21st, but hard to see”, she said. Where, not on the one I accessed???

    I guess I’m not surprised, scheduling details are prepared by HSA civil servants, right? Say no more….

    Wasted my time!! Oh, I forgot, that doesn’t count to civil service processes!!

  2. Anonymous says:

    It seems to me that Cayman is on the verge of getting on the CDC red list of countries that the US discourages people from traveling to. The CDC criterion is objective. 500 cases per 100,000 in the past 30 days. Given the number of cases identified every day since government cut the quarantine time we must be very close.

    What are the chances that Wayne&Co have even thought of that with their re-opening plans? They certainly have not mentioned it. It would be embarrassing to get on the CDC red list before opening although it would decrease the spread of Covid as sensible tourists would not come to Cayman. Maybe that is why CIG decreased the quarantine period to 5 days? Maybe they are far more clever than they get credit for?

    • Anonymous says:

      And then how are the people who need medical treatment in the US going to survive? This whole thing is a shambles. The govt. has had so much time to figure this out instead of burying their head in the sand. Lateral flow tests need to be free and the norm like in the UK and antivirals need to be handed out.
      Stop panicking and realize the rest of the world is just dealing with this and it’s not actually that scary, I am more scared of dying on the roads in cayman…..

  3. Anonymous says:

    According to this evening’s government Covid update after 2 weeks only 7% of people over 50 have received their booster. 93% with declining immunity remain to be vaccinated in how many days before we welcome Covid?

  4. Anonymous says:

    More from Singapore’s live with Covid program this evening:

    “Singapore’s healthcare system is at risk of being “overwhelmed” by surging coronavirus infections, government officials warned Wednesday, a day after the city-state expanded quarantine-free travel as it shifts its approach to dealing with the pandemic.

    The health ministry reported 18 deaths on Wednesday – Singapore’s highest toll in a single day – and 3,862 more cases, just shy of the record 3,994 tallied the day before.

    “At the current situation, we face considerable risk of the healthcare system being overwhelmed,” Lawrence Wong, co-chair of a government task force fighting Covid-19, said before the new figures were released, AFP reports.

    Wong, who is also the finance minister, said nearly 90% of isolation beds in hospitals have been filled and more than two-thirds of intensive care unit beds are occupied.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Why do we care about cases? Isn’t airline travel safer than going to the supermarket? After all one requires proof of vaccination to get on a plane, but not to enter a supermarket. I’m vaccinated and Covid is real, but our fear based islands, falsely professing to follow the science, is quite frankly embarrassing. Where is the science for our roads and sea? Where are the people bitching about Florida now? Told you in mid August Delta lasts, on average, 45 days.

  6. Anonymous says:

    We are so lucky and should be so grateful to the UK. Some 70 year olds in England not yet called for their booster and over 50’s already getting it hre, despite the likely winter wave coming in winter time in Europe. Thanks to the Uk’s support, we can safely open the borders on Nov 22 with no quarantine for vaccinated knowing we have high vaccination rates and likely boosters for everyone.

    • Anonymous says:

      Totally agree with your first 2 sentences. However it is delusional to think that we can safely re-open without quarantine prior to all who need boosters getting them and the new oral anti-Covid meds arriving in Cayman. If we drop quarantine in November many will be hospitalized and some will die unnecessarily.

      • Anonymous says:

        What do you know that first world countries dont? You know the ones that actually know how to create a vaccine to save your ass!

    • Anonymous says:

      Lucky for You but unfortunately Cayman would rather be Covid Free! Opening at all cost that’s what you think and would like to see eh?? Sooon Come Ya Hear !

      • Anonymous says:

        Cayman has never been covid free. Weren’t before and aren’t now, but it sounded good, right? Only to the foolish.

        Cayman- 1,093 cases. 226 active cases, 867 fully recovered cases, 2 deaths. Never covid free.

        • Ian says:

          Yes it was eradicated until Pact decided to bring it back by lowering quarantine. Now we are masked up

      • Anonymous says:

        Lol. COVID never has been and never will be covid free. That has always been scientifically impossible

    • Anonymous says:

      Why don’t you go home ! After you get your UK jab eh?

  7. JTB says:

    Having read this I went down to Lions Centre today to get my booster.

    Total mayhem. Crowds of people milling about, nobody with a clue what’s going on, no organisation of any kind. I gave up and came away again.

    Such a contrast to the previous set up at the airport, which was a model of efficiency.

    • Anonymous says:

      You have to remember that the current set up of everybody going to one location is to make things easy for the HSA staff rather than getting people vaccinated quickly and efficiently. That is why there are so few efforts to take the vaccine to the district clinics and district community centres.

    • Anonymous says:

      Probably a good week to avoid and try again next week. I heard it was a bit messy as well.

      With only a flight a day, could still have partitioned off the airport and did it there.

    • Anonymous says:

      10 @ 11:59pm – Thanks for sharing this. The difference between the current and past vaccine distribution processes could be directly related to a different Government and Health Minister. Quite unlikely that major changes have been made in mid- and lower-tier levels of the vaccination program.

      Not sure if I would go so far as to suggest the novices at the top and the fact they have no clue, combined with the historical trend of politicians directly involving themselves in public sector practice, is the actual cause but quite possible. Just saying!

    • Anonymous says:

      That is not correct, we just ours no issues. waited around 25 mins to be called in no issues

    • Anonymous says:

      I had a completely difference experience this morning. Arrived at 10:35 and was given a numbered ticket and two small forms to complete. I was #15 in line for the booster. I found the entire process well executed and everyone was polite and helpful. Vaccinations started at 11am in groups of 12. I was in the second group. By 11:25 I was back in my car and my online vaccination certification was already updated on the HSA portal and my electronic vaccination card, showing 3 doses, was updated in the wallet app on my iPhone. A flawless experience. My sister, who is a few years younger than me, lives in the US and has no schedule for her booster and doesn’t have a QR code verification for the two doses she has received. Same for my parents who now live off island and are 79 years old. No booster yet and no QR code verification. People should stop complaining and show some appreciation for how fortunate we are here.

    • Anonymous says:

      Went at 1:55, out by 2:20. Very smooth and well organised.

  8. Anonymous says:

    More vaccines, more Covid.

    At the country-level, there appears to be no discernable relationship between percentage of population fully vaccinated and new COVID-19 cases in the last 7 days (Fig. 1). In fact, the trend line suggests a marginally positive association such that countries with higher percentage of population fully vaccinated have higher COVID-19 cases per 1 million people.

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8481107/

    • Anonymous says:

      That’s to be expected and because countries with higher vax rates have less restrictions and therefore are open/likely more cases – look at the Uk – fully open with no masks or any restrictions since July 19 and a high vax rate.

      Stop looking at acses – they don’t matter – COVID isn’t going away, likely we all get it at some point – the vaccination stops death and hospitalisation – cases are not a measure of any use. Deaths are.

      • Anonymous says:

        Dude – increasing cases preceded increasing hospitalizations in every wave all over the planet; similarly increasing hospitalizations preceded increasing deaths in every wave all over the planet. I agree with telling people to get vaccinated but telling them increasing cases is nothing to pay attention to is just plain wrong.

        • Anonymous says:

          and the vaccine helps protect against the infections becoming hospitalisations and death.

          the vaccine does not stop infection, just the severity and length of sickness.

          I really don’t know what you anti-vaxers are going to do when you need a blood transfusion or an organ transplant.

          Do you think they will helpfully mark those that had the vaccine on the blood?

  9. Anonymous says:

    Today’s news from Singapore and its living with Covid programme –

    “Singapore recorded 18 new Covid deaths today – the highest daily death toll since the start of the pandemic – and 3,862 new cases.

    A recent surge in cases has led to social restrictions being extended by a month.

    The record death toll comes despite over 80% of Singapore’s population being vaccinated.”

    • Anonymous says:

      In the past month, 74.5% of deaths in Singapore were unvaccinated or partially vaccinated. All of the 25.5% of vaccinated people that died had underlying medical conditions. We should be looking at how we can further protect those people while being realistic about the need to adapt to covid since it is not going away.

  10. Anonymous says:

    TCI put in place a vaccine passport system and night curfew system as part of their re-opening to prevent unvaccinated people from attending locations where tourists might be. That is something that should be considered here.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Hopefully the pediatric version of the Pfizer vaccine will be made available in Cayman soon. The US is going to roll it out in early November to try to prevent another Covid wave.

    “Children age five to 11 in the US could soon be able to get a Covid-19 shot at their pediatrician’s office, local pharmacy and potentially even their school, the White House said Wednesday as it detailed plans for the authorization of the Pfizer shot for younger children in a matter of weeks.”

  12. Anonymous says:

    Government needs to get off their collective butts and get the booster roll out going. Look at what is happening in the UK in the last 24 hours.

    “In the UK, 49,139 new people tested positive for Covid today and 179 people died.

    The latest government figures also show that 869 new patients were admitted to hospital on Saturday.

    The weekly figures show that cases and deaths are significantly rising.

    Between 14 and 20 October, 320,594 people tested positive – a 17.2% increase on the previous 7 days.

    During the same period, 954 people died with Covid – a 21.1% rise on the previous week.

    The latest vaccination data shows that as of yesterday, 86.1% of people aged 12 and up had been given their first dose and 79% their second.”

    • Anonymous says:

      Compared to 1000 a deaths a day before vaccines were widely circulated in the UK. So vaccines work, and the Uk have it under control.

      • Anonymous says:

        Vaccines are great but bot even the UK government believes that Covid is under control at the moment if you paid attention to the UK press briefing today. The medical and scientific communities are arguing the government to bring back public health measures to prevent a disaster.

  13. Anonymous says:

    CNS – I have an issue with your headline. It is true that the age limits for boosters have expanded, the HSA has decided that in October only people who live west of Bodden town can get the booster. No clinics are available in any of the Eastern districts.

  14. Anonymous says:

    Some people on here are pushing for Cayman to copy TCI. They seem to forget that TCI has a vaccine passport system and a night curfew to slow the virus spread and also has 1/2 the population of Cayman and 10 times the death rate. That definitely does not seem better than what we have now.

    • Anonymous says:

      I guess it depends on your perspective. The curfew in T&C is from 1 am to 5 am so not really an issue for me. I also don’t mind using a vaccine passport as that is the way much of the world is going anyway.

      For unemployed tourism workers, T&C probably seems better because at least they could be working. Wasn’t it Cayman Reef Divers that moved four of their boats to T&C? I think their tourism industry is thriving despite the curfew and vaccine passport.

      Oh and people may have a curfew from 1 – 4 am and a vaccine passport system but they can also leave and return freely.

      Unfortunately all of the deaths in T&C were people who either died before the vaccine was developed or chose not to take it.

    • Anonymous says:

      Copy Sweden, no jabs, no health passes and no problem

  15. anon says:

    Why no update on vaccination for 5-11 year olds in Cayman? FDA will approve in next few weeks. Is there a plan to minimize disruption to schooling in Cayman?

  16. Anonymous says:

    Cool. Why have they been turning away at risk people of younger ages then? They are a shit show who ever is running the show.

  17. Anonymous says:

    bring in digital vax passports for social activities. its being done everywhere else, why not here?

    • Beaumont Zodecloun says:

      That is your greatest concern? Social activities? Please tell me you are joking.

    • Anonymous says:

      Not where I live. You could not even suggest such garbage here, but carry on in your dreamworld. I hear Australia, NZ and Canada have openings for your type.

  18. Anonymous says:

    What is a realistic expectation of how many months it should take for HSA to input a patient’s vaccination record and issue a certificate? Mine is missing COVID PCRs from a year ago and my complete vaccination course from 8 months ago. How can HSA have confidence in their reporting and advising to CIG, if they have not factored these libraries of missing data? Is this not important enough to hire a couple temps?

  19. Anonymous says:

    Come on Mr premier please act now ! The UK open up catastrophic plan has failed yet again! Yet not one headline from our new outlets??

  20. Anonymous says:

    Help breathing is very different from oxygen therapy, the later treatment being much more normal these days in delta hospitalizations. Ventilators can be hooked-up to oxygenated bed, or oxygen mix can come out of the panel into a mask. Both treatments count against our 40 bed capacity in Grand Cayman.

  21. Anonymous says:

    It’s not over 50s. Schedule says over 60s

    CNS: I’ve sent a note to the HSA communications that the schedule still says 60 and over and have now linked the updated schedule in the article. The correct age is 50+.

  22. Anonymous says:

    I see from the vaccination schedule that government has written off the people living east of Prospect once again. There are no vaccination clinics in Bodden Town, East End or North Side listed for October. Excellent representation our MPs are giving us! – NOT

  23. Anonymous says:

    Been asking what the holdup for boosters for 50+ was, for the last 3 weeks .. breakthrough cases are mounting, a new variant is spreading. Thank goodness common sense prevailed and HSA has made them more freely available! Getting mine today … thank you HSA.

    • Anonymous says:

      It’s not for 50+, read the HSA schedule it says 60+

      CNS: I’ve sent a note to the HSA communications that the schedule still says 60 and over and have now linked the updated schedule in the article. The correct age is 50+.

  24. Cayman Crash Test Dummies says:

    They will mount because our government has apparently decide to listen to those who cannot control their own population and protect their own citizens and has had tremendous lost of life because of their hocus pocus greedy theories about how to manage this Covid 19 pandemic and it’s socio economic consequences and are prepared ignore sensible safety protocols to see others do the same so life can return to so call normal for them. Free vaccines and pilot programs Cayman when have they ever given a damn or done anything for us that we Caymanians haven’t paid for in lives or economic loss, Now we see spikes and increase infectious variants arise as predicted by their own Covid 19 experts and our leaders are foolishly allowing them to free flow in out of Cayman without little our no restrictions and flinging the doors wide open to the rest of world to justify and satisfy them.

  25. Anonymous says:

    226 active cases of Covid and the rolling number of Covid cases detected in the previous 4 weeks rapidly approaching 500. Once we hit something like 355 cases over the previous 28 days Cayman will receive international recognition!!!!

    “Destinations that fall into the “Covid-19 Very High” Level 4 category have had more than 500 cases per 100,000 residents in the past 28 days, according to CDC criteria.
    People should avoid traveling to locations designated with a Level 4 notice, the CDC recommends. Anyone who must travel should be fully vaccinated first, the agency advises.”

    • Anonymous says:

      Well Wayne said that the PACT government was going to do something that no other government had achieved. Getting on to the CDC highest risk list BEFORE dropping quarantine certainly fulfills that promise.

  26. Anonymous says:

    According to yesterday’s CIG press release government has only managed to give the booster to 6% of those who are at risk over the past couple of weeks. That leaves 94% at risk from declining immunity who will need to get the booster if government hopes to mitigate what will happen when quarantine is dropped and the virus is officially welcomed to Cayman.

  27. Anonymous says:

    This is a real shot in the arm for reopening. Had we not been driven by the irrational fear of politicians pandering to uneducated voters, we wouldn’t now be in the predicament that requires boosters for all those responsible citizens who followed the science and got vaccinated at their earliest opportunity before PACT is willing to do the right thing and open up.

    • Anonymous says:

      Instead we would have had a couple of hundred dead. Glad that the previous government and PACT followed the science and not the ‘open and let the dying begin’ vocal minority.

  28. Anonymous says:

    CNN this morning –

    Expert explains why the UK might be seeing rising Covid cases

    “Britain has registered nearly half a million cases in the past two weeks — and almost 50,000 on Monday — more than France, Germany, Italy and Spain combined. The UK reported 223 deaths on Tuesday, the highest daily figure since early March.

    Johnson has strayed from much of the European Union in his approach; while a number of countries on the continent have introduced vaccine passports, England halted its original plan to do so. Mask-wearing and social distancing and other measures are no longer required by law in Britain.
    That contrasts with far stricter measures in several European nations, where proof of vaccination or a negative test are needed to visits bars and restaurants or work in several fields, including healthcare.
    Hospitals in Britain are now close to buckling once again under the strain of new admissions. And the country’s early vaccination success risks being undone by a stuttering rollout of booster shots and shots for children.
    “Exceptional policies lead to exceptional outcomes,” Deepti Gurdasani, an epidemiologist at Queen Mary University in London, told CNN. “It’s very predictable. This is a consequence of opening everything up.”
    “We’re approaching winter, and things are only going to get worse,” she added.
    Some things may yet shut back down; Johnson’s spokesperson admitted on Monday that a “challenging” winter lies ahead, and the Prime Minister has refused to rule out a return of mask mandates or stronger restrictions to protect the country’s National Health Service (NHS) in the coming weeks.”

    • Anonymous says:

      Wow, you are extremely fearful. Best you stay indoors and lock yourself up. The rest of us will keep the show running for you while you do that. 🙂

  29. Anonymous says:

    I sincerely hope that government is watching and actually understands what is happening with other countries that are dropping quarantine and the consequences of that move and the measures that are necessary to prevent disaster in that context. I also hope that they are not believing all the hype from the open at any cost cabal.

    “reports for Reuters from Singapore that even as travel opens up, a recent rise in cases has prompted tighter measures locally, including limiting social gatherings to two people and only allowing vaccinated people to enter malls. Mask-wearing is also mandatory, with some violators fined or even jailed for breaching Covid-19 regulations.

    Singapore saw a record 3,994 new coronavirus cases on Tuesday, having recorded more than 3,000 daily infections in recent days. Over 80% of the 5.45 million population vaccinated.”

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