Georgetown, Guyana: The Ministry of Health of Guyana, in collaboration with the Pan American Health Organisation/World Health Organisation (PAHO/WHO) and UNICEF, hosted an Award Ceremony for the 2022 to 2023 Vaccination Week in the Americas Eassy, Poetry and Photo Competitions, earlier this week.
The ceremony, held at the Grand Coastal Hotel, saw 11 awardees which included school students and health care workers.
During his remarks, Minister of Health, Dr Frank Anthony, said that the initiative of getting children involved in vaccination is a means of educating and allowing children to actively partake in the vaccination process.
“Over the years, the vaccination programme has been one of the strongest in the MOH. It’s one of the areas we have constantly invested resources to ensure that children across the Regions are vaccinated. Through vaccination, many childhood infections and diseases are prevented”, Minister Anthony said, according to the update by the Ministry.
He highlighted that the Ministry has expanded the amount of antigen administered by 18 and has seen the success of the vaccination programme to date. “Our vaccination coverage, despite the COVID-19 pandemic, has been exceptionally good”, he disclosed.
In addition, Minister Anthony made mention of PAHO/WHO and UNICEF, who he said was very instrumental in assisting the Ministry in the procurement of vaccine refrigerators and maintaining the cold chain.
Meanwhile, Maternal and Child Health Officer Dr Oneka Scott, in remarks, stated that the vaccination competitions were aimed at increasing coverage in areas that are below target, to help promote vaccination efforts across Guyana and to provide a platform to encourage students to share the importance of being fully vaccinated.
The Ministry also informed that Dr Scott further stated that the ‘vaccination week’ observance was extended to a month of activities rolled out regionally to promote immunisation and vaccines.
Also present at the award ceremony were Dr Janice Woolford, Specialist in Family and Community Health, attached to the PAHO Guyana Country Office; Ms Jewel Crosse, Youth and Adolescent Development Officer, attached to UNICEF Guyana and Suriname and other officials.