Ministry of Health Monitoring Omicron Variant, Continued Vigilance Advised

(Press Release) – In light of the global rise in cases of the omicron variant of COVID-19, T\the Ministry of Health and Social Services today issued a warning to residents to remain vigilant of the COVID-19 protocols.

Ministry officials disclosed that information on the new Omicron variant is still limited. Stating that since the variant was first reported by South African authorities on 24, November 2021, there has been a sharp increase in the number of infections globally. The variant currently appears to have an increased potential to be transmitted among members of the same household and is showing greater potential to evade immune protection from natural immunity and vaccination. There is no confirmed data on the severity of Omicron infection and morbidity.

Officials further stated that in this time of uncertainty and with increased passenger arrivals on island, residents must take measures to reduce their risk of COVID-19 infection; including proven public health and social measures such as wearing masks, hand hygiene, social distancing and avoiding crowded spaces. Additionally, residents and visitors to the island alike should abide by quarantine laws prohibiting contact with persons in quarantine.

The Ministry of Health and Social Services is also appealing to residents to get vaccinated or obtain a booster dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. Vaccination improves the body’s ability to fight disease and leads to an easier recovery and better outcome should COVID-19 infection occur.

Anyone wishing to register for vaccination should do so by contacting the St. John’s Health Centre at 491-5218. Parents may also register their children age 12 and over for vaccination.