COVID-19 vaccinations are now entering the second round for the people who were part of phase one, meaning frontline healthcare workers, persons sixty and older and those with special conditions. This is approximately two and a half months after they received their dose of the Oxford AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine. Duane Moody was out at vaccination centres in Belize City today and has this report.
Dr. Melissa Diaz, Deputy Regional Health Manager, Central Health Region
“We’ve had a lot of people coming back for their second dose. People have been making their lines; I feel we have been very efficient and persons have been able to get the vaccines throughout the day. We have different sites in Belize District that people can go to. We have our staff at these sites helping with the flow to be very efficient and effective and we are encouraging anyone who is due the second dose to come in and get the second dose of the vaccine.”
Duane Moody, Reporting
But this second round does not prevent those who fall within the first three phases of the vaccination rollout from getting their first shot. On the contrary, Doctor Melissa Diaz encourages you to come out and get vaccinated.
Dr. Melissa Diaz
“We try to ensure that we are accessible so that we are located in different places at different times. We have offered in the Belize District for persons to come in at site. We are offering vaccines at the clinics; we are also doing outreach to many businesses, utility companies, etc and we are also doing mobile clinics to areas that are not accessible. And we have seen quite a significant uptake once the strategy had changed a little bit. If we just sit at the sites and wait, the uptake might not be as much. But when we go out to the businesses, when we go out to the mobiles, people come together and they do the vaccine and do it in a group. So people who were hesitant initially would sit and see their peers and colleagues getting the vaccine and they would say you know what, I will go ahead and do it.”
Some of the colleagues out today were from Gas Tomza. Whether senior or junior staff, the company workers were motivated because of their high interaction with the public.
Roselie Alvarado, Employee, Gas Tomza
“It is our right to protect ourselves and our relatives and everybody else. For us to be able to…well I know it is not going to go back to normality, but we all need to contribute to our country.”
“Did you hesitate when coming out to get your vaccine?”
“No I was prepared to do so already. Being part of a company that does daily deliveries and we have contact with persons every day, it does affect our lives. And my invitation to everybody out there, don’t be afraid. Come, get vaccinated, protect yourself, protect your loved ones, help your country.”
Aureliano Bautista, Manager, Gas Tomza [Translation]
“I came because it is a civic duty to be protected. It has been over a year that we are in this pandemic. And now that the vaccine is here in country, we should take heed. I invite everybody to come and get vaccinated because if you protect yourself, I am protected and vice versa.”