The Dominica Association of Industry and Commerce (DAIC) has endorsed Dominica’s national vaccination strategy as “the foundation” of the country’s socioeconomic recovery from the impacts of Covid-19.
The DAIC statement follows a call made last week by businessman Karl Nassief for the organization, among others, to issue a statement calling for mandatory vaccination in Dominica.
In its statement, the private sector organization does not call for a vaccine mandate but it promotes vaccination as the most effective tool to combat Covid-19.
“Established medical research tells us that the vaccine strengthens our immune system by training it to recognize and fight against the virus, thereby reducing the probability of severe illness and death. Extensive vaccination may also foster population immunity, making it more difficult for the virus to spread from person to person,” the DAIC notes.
Citing recent data which shows that the majority of infections and hospitalizations occur in unvaccinated persons, the association encouraged people to be mindful of the need for collective responsibility in deciding whether or not to take the vaccine.
“We appreciate that vaccination is a personal health decision. At the same time, due consideration must be given to how our personal decisions affect the wider community, and more particularly, the most vulnerable among us,” DAIC argues in response to those who refuse or are reluctant to take the vaccine.
Acknowledging that there are a lot of questions about the safety of the Covid-19 vaccine, DAIC says it has been actively supporting its members and the wider business community in raising vaccination literacy and addressing the issue of vaccination hesitancy.
On Monday, September 6, 2021, the organization hosted an open virtual discussion on the topic “Covid-19 and Vaccination: Considerations for Businesses and Employees,” which featured as guest speaker Dr. Swinburne Augustine, a Dominica-born Microbiologist and Immunologist based in the United States of America. The discussion covered a range of concerns including the content, efficacy, and side effects of Covid-19 Vaccines. The DAIC is encouraging the public to view a recording of the session at: bit.ly/3tkuxvT and to contact the DAIC about hosting similar information sessions for other member organizations.
“Health officials have made access to vaccines easy and free of cost to our citizens. We encourage every eligible person to avail of the opportunity to receive this safe and effective vaccine as we endeavor to protect public health and our economic recovery,” the DAIC states, adding “Following vaccination, it is important to maintain compliance with the established health protocols, including wearing a mask, social distancing, and cleaning or sanitizing your hands regularly.”