Get vaccinated – health minister to Haitian nationals

influenza vaccineHealth Minister Julius Timothy has called on all Haitian nationals living in Dominica to get vaccinated.

This, as Dominica joins the rest of the region in observing the 11th observance of Vaccination Week in the Americas.

“As Minister for Health I also make a plea to all Haitian nationals living in Dominica to visit a health center nearest them to receive the necessary vaccines which will be offered to them free of charge,” Timothy said during a speech to mark the week.

The health minister expressed concern that the level of immunization in Dominica has dropped in 2012 as compared to previous years. “Our immunization coverage in 2012 for two of the antigens given, under the EPI Program to 81 percent and for DPT, 94 percent … compared previously to over 95 percent for all antigens,” he said. “This is a matter of serious concern.”

The Expanded Program on Immunization (EPI) was established in 1974 through a World Health Assembly resolution to build on the success of the global smallpox eradication programme, and to ensure that all children in all countries benefited from life-saving vaccines.

DPT refers to a class of combination vaccines against three infectious diseases in humans: diphtheria, pertussis (whooping cough) and tetanus.

Timothy is now calling on parents to use Vaccination Week to catch up on immunization for their families.  “I want to urge parents to use this week to catch up on their immunizations, both for themselves and the little ones,” he said.

He took time out to recognize the staff of the health ministry responsible for the immunization program across the island. “Your efforts are not in vain,” he said. “The ministry of health recognizes your sterling contribution towards ensuring our coverage towards all our children. We cannot be complacent. The high standards set in the past must be maintained, or if anything, made better. I have confidence that you have the skills to make this happen.”

Dr. Carissa F. Etienne, director of the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO), said everyone has a part to play fighting diseases. “Governments, in funding programs; national immunization programs, in organizing activities; health workers, in spreading out to the farthest corners of the Americas to vaccinate people of all ages, not only in cities but also in rural and border zones and other hard-to-reach areas,” she pointed out. “And families and communities, for making sure that everyone gets up to date on their vaccines.” she added.

Vaccination Week of the Americas is being observed this year from April 20 to 27 under the theme “Vaccination, A Shared Responsibility.”

The theme highlights the importance of governments, health workers, communities and families doing their part to support immunization.

This year the PAHO/WHO intiative seeks to protect 44 million people in 44 countries and territories against dangerous diseases.

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  1. Mane
    April 23, 2013

    Dominicans complain about everything. If the minister of health Julius Timothy,Dr. Carissa F. Etienne, director of the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO), and other experts encourage citizens to be aware of health risks, and to take necessary precautions against diseases. Who are you to question their judgements. They are the experts not you.
    If they call on Haitians they are not wrong and it is not discriminative.A large population of Haitians do not have medical records.Just like the Americans do to foreigners, and citizens alike,Immunization is mandatory for greencards,school,certain jobs etc, so stop being negative,and bias.

  2. Justice and Truth
    April 22, 2013

    There is a reason why the Minister stated this. There must be reasons for concern. Do not be too hard on him. Some countries are more susceptible to viruses and some deadly diseases. What the minister should establish is, when they migrate to Dominica, they should be inoculated at point of entry. It should be mandatory.
    The minister could also advise them, prior to leaving their country, to ensure that they are vaccinated and to travel with a document of confirmation. Allowing all sorts of people to enter DA without being vaccinated, could result in transmission of diseases which Dominicans may contract. An epidemic and eventual death could ensue. Therefore, in this case, it is not one to be taken lightly.

  3. out of south city
    April 22, 2013

    Why are we so gullible since things are initiated from the industrialised countries? Do we know what is in the shots that we become so vulnerable to? We need to read about vaccines by a brother named Curtis Cost. His book is entitled “vaccines are dangerous.” These Europeans always want to have black people as guinea pigs and we are so gullible we go like sheep to the slaughter, not even asking any question. We just believe that everything that comes from these countries are good for us.
    I agree with Just My Opinion one hundred percent. We as a people need to be more aware of what’s going on and stop accepting things at face value. We need to read more and do more research.

  4. Anonymous
    April 22, 2013

    I must admit that we black people are our worst enemy. The Caribbean is so divided. Shame! That is stereotype at its’ very best. Sometimes, i get angry at those who try to bring down the PM by any means necessary, however, i must say that i am extremely disappointed in the Minister. Haiti we are sorry! You are our brothers and sisters.

  5. lala
    April 22, 2013

    a bunch of incompetent plp in the govt. thats y d.a is like that.

    • Justice and Truth
      April 22, 2013

      I cannot help but laugh when some of you make such statements. :lol: Oh those poor guys. Always giving the authorities a bad name? Do not worry. We in Canada do likewise to ours on occasion. :lol: We can bet this is not unusual in other parts of the world. :lol:
      I heard tonight that next week the premier of Ontario will bring down the provincial budget and that some tax credits will be eliminated, that Toronto will become more expensive. This is not good news and a pre-mature one at that. God help us!
      It is already extremely expensive. I said to one in authority, they will make some of us run away from Toronto. Just letting you know that Dominicans are not alone. We emphathize with you. You have company in us. :lol: It is a worldwide situation.

  6. Gary
    April 22, 2013

    This is a very dumb and inappropriate recommendation made by the Minister to the Haitian Nationals living in the country.Inappropriate, because it shows insensitivity by him towards the Haitian in the country.Why single out a particular Nationality calling on them to be vaccinated. It is dumb since it shows a lack of understanding by the Minister regarding the issue of mass immunizations.Doesn’t the Minister know that mass immunizations have been carried in Haiti long before it was ever introduced to Dominica and still going on and that a great majority of Haitians at some time in their lives may have been vaccinated and so it makes no sense calling on them to be vaccinated if they have done it before in their country.

    There has been a lot of debate and controversy regarding the safety of vaccinations with questions being ask about it’s effectiveness in preventing diseases.People should take time to educate themselves when it comes to making decisions before participating in these so called Government sponsored immunizations programs backed by PAHO and The WHO.Government officials should be called upon to seek out information regarding such issues before implementation not just rely on organizations such as PAHO and The WHO,it is their moral responsibility to do so.

  7. john
    April 22, 2013

    so why the haitian’s dominican too needs to get vacination to protect them selves

  8. Just My Opinion
    April 22, 2013

    Before we go panicking and injecting all sorts of poisons (which we are unaware of their after-effects), please lets do our homework, and ask ourselves questions about vaccinations. In my opinion, this is all in the name of money and profits for the ‘fat’ corporate and pharmaceutical industries, who, once we are vaccinated, get ill through these vaccinations years later, can have their way with us. By then we will be powerless individuals and at their beck and call, waiting for the next set of poisons to inject into us to counteract the one that did the damage in the first place! Why not invest in healthy preventive measures, like ensuring that the foods we are accepting from USA and the likes are of a standard that’s fit for human consumption. Teach health and wellbeing in schools, churches and families. Invest in agriculture, so that the nation can feed itself and sell to neighbouring countries and make a profit to invest back into our country. Don’t be scared off by those in power. Make a stand, do something to make a difference for the sake of future humanity.

    • Jimi Hendrix
      April 22, 2013

      If you don;t know what you are talking about please stay quiet and stop spreading disinformation. You are doing more harm than good.

      The invention of the internet was a wonderful thing, but you must not believe everything you read on the net.

  9. faceup
    April 22, 2013

    I dont know why the headline has to talk off,, Hatian’s, it should be resident’s of Dominica. !! !!.

    • Friskers
      April 22, 2013

      @ faceup, I agree. Why say to a a particular group of people that they need to be vaccinated?. This is real discrimination and to an extent, politically incorrect!. This message should be conveyed to all residents of Dominica.

      This remark really should not be coming from the Minister of Health.

    • Unknown
      April 22, 2013

      I certainly Agreed with you .
      Why he used that kind of a head line. Minister of Health i know you could do better than that. Go and correct yourself ok . Because it looks like you are discriminating the people which is bad for them. It better you say all resident in Dominica.
      And why you not mention Spanish too

    • Justice and Truth
      April 22, 2013

      Dominica is a relatively healthy country including its nationals. People carry viruses and other diseases. I do not want to appear to be discriminating but those who migrate to other lands as to Dominica should be vaccinated and even prior to leaving their country and migrating there.

    • Anonymous
      April 23, 2013

      well we dominicans have all been getn vaccinated from birth all thru secondary school.i didnt think his intention was malicious……idk

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