By Kadeem Joseph
Efforts to boost the country’s health education campaign and improve the uptake of lifesaving Covid-19 vaccines will be getting an injection of support with the addition of a communication specialist from the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO).
Minister of Health Sir Molwyn Joseph said the regional body will be funding the efforts of the specialist “to assist in getting the message across”.
He said the move is an “extra step” by the health ministry to build confidence in the vaccines’ efficacy and allay fears that the government’s education campaign falls short.
“For me, as I said, it is unusual for us to hear that when the people have such great access to information on the computers and at the same time, we have had our doctors here in Antigua and Barbuda appearing on television and radio,” he explained further.
Sir Molwyn, however, conceded that if it is believed that more information will help the public, then the ministry is “more than willing” to assist.
He said confirmation of the PAHO specialist is expected this week.
The minister was also asked about the ministry’s present communication outfit, which he said had already been working to ensure the information needed by the public is distributed.
“We want to say to the public, ‘alright, you say that you need more education, let us get someone who is trained in the field of communication,’” he said.
“We will add that individual to what exists now so that we can address what appears to be the concern of the public that they are not getting enough information.”
Antigua and Barbuda continues to see an increase in active Covid-19 cases, with the present count standing at 185.
The increase comes amid a continued agitation by some to see an end to the country’s state of emergency order, mask-wearing and other Covid-19 safety protocols.
The Freedom Fighters group, which has emerged as a major voice in support of these efforts, has also spoken out against coronavirus vaccines.