As St. Vincent and the Grenadines continue to battle a relatively slow vaccine uptake, taskforce advisor and infectious disease specialist Dr. Jerrol Thompson said a new promotion campaign by the Ministry of Health, Wellness and the Environment will be rolled out soon to aid the fight against vaccine hesitancy.
Dr. Thompson who was on a programme on VC3 last evening said influencers, doctors and the vaccinated can all play a role in informing and encouraging those who are still on the fence to take the jab.
Additionally, Dr. Thompson addressed the difference between the various stages of vaccine uptake, noting that there are those who want the vaccine, anti vaxers and vaccine hesitancy caused by a host of reasons.
He said over time many in the vaccine hesitancy category will get vaccinated, often when there is a surge in cases. He noted that persons who were once hesitant usually line up in droves to be vaccinated as in the case seen recently in the British Virgin islands and Trinidad and Tobago.
The infectious disease specialist said that shadow groups hired to spread false propaganda about the vaccines are being fuelled by persons who may have an interest in seeing the pandemic prolonged.
Dr. Thompson added that anti vaxxers who have been around for a long time are also behind much of the false narrative that has been circulating, and has worked on some persons. While it is possible to overturn this with factual information, Dr. Thompson said witnessing the Covid-19 death toll first hand, sometimes may be the motivation some people need to get vaccinated.