CARIBBEAN Public Health Agency (CARPHA) executive director Dr Joy St John on Monday praised Caricom heads of government for leading the region’s charge to protect its people against the ravages of the covid19 pandemic and ensure equitable access to covid19 vaccines.
Among the leaders praised by St John was this country’s Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves. Other leaders include Trinidad and Tobago Prime Minister and Barbados Prime Minister Mia Mottley.
During an Association of Caribbean States (ACS) virtual conference on covid19, St John said Caricom’s response to the pandemic has been spearheaded admirably by its leaders.
Among those identified by St John as invaluable contributions to these efforts were “the past and current chairs of the conference of heads of government, including Hon Ralph Gonsalves.
“John said Gonsalves are among leaders who argued for the right to access of PPE (personal protective equipment) and, most recently, vaccines.”
On equity in vaccine distribution, she said, “CARPHA devised an allocation formula based on the burden of disease and the age profile of member states, among many other things.”
On testing for covid19 variants in the Caribbean, St John said, “So far we have only detected the UK variant, and another variant is closely related to the Brazilian but still a little different.”
Last month, Rowley said Caricom would seek to obtain additional vaccines from India and the African Union and ask any of its member states who acquire vaccines to share some with those states which had been unable to do so. He also said Caricom would approach the Biden administration to ask the United States for help in providing vaccines for the Caribbean.