COVID-19: New vaccination measures are to ensure ‘public safety’ – Health Minister
There has been some resistance to the updated COVID-19 vaccination requirements instituted by the government but these measures, according to the Health Minister, Dr. Frank Anthony are in place to ensure public safety.
“It is one way to ensure that public environments are safe,” the Health Minister said in his daily COVID-19 update on Monday.
The new measures, applicable for the month of September, states that adults are required to be vaccinated to access public buildings and most private buildings that members of the public have lawful access to, including learning institutions.
The previous order, which has since been revoked, had stated that these requirements were in place for government ministries and government agencies. Now it has been extended to all public buildings.
“Public buildings” mean any building to which the public has lawful access to and shall include both publicly and privately owned buildings including all institutions of learning. And this is also said to include places of worship, supermarkets, stores, banks and other commercial places.
Meanwhile, for unvaccinated people seeking to enter these buildings, an appointment must be made and those people must produce a negative result from a PCR COVID-19 test taken within seven days of the appointment.
These PCR tests must be done at a private facility approved by the Ministry of Health and costs about $20,000.
The Health Minister posited that “Once people are vaccinated, environments will be safer and we have to create a safe environment if we are to push back against the virus.”
According to Dr Anthony, these measures not only protect those accessing a specific service, but also those employed at the establishments.