Colombo, Sept 21 (DailyMirror) – Vaccination centres drying up as youngsters refuse vaccines.
Health authorities yesterday raised serious concerns over the lack of interest among the 20 to 29 age group to get themselves vaccinated against COVID19 with many having fears that it may lead to infertility while some preferred unproven natural remedies.
Senior doctors told Daily Mirror that only an estimated 40% of the 20 to 29 age group had received the vaccines, island wide, which was a very poor percentage at a time when Sri Lanka was aiming to inoculate all its citizens against the virus as soon as possible as the Delta variant had already claimed many lives.
According to figures, in the month of August alone 95 percent of those who had succumbed to the virus were unvaccinated while Sri Lanka continued to report at least 2 to 3 deaths daily among youngsters.
It is alleged that some self-claimed ayurvedic practitioners were capitalizing on the situation by selling unproven herbal remedies claiming that they would help cure the virus
This is alarming and health authorities have urged the targeted population to keep aside their preferences and take the available vaccines.
Doctors said that vaccination centers were drying up in several areas due to the lack of interest among the youngsters even in Colombo where many youngsters were waiting to travel to the western countries in a few years.
As a result, youngsters who needed to be vaccinated were demanding for the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines and were refusing to take the Sinopharm vaccine, to travel to Western countries in the future.“the Western countries have also created a fear against the Sinopharm vaccines whereas it has been proven that Sinopharm vaccines are also very good. The youngsters have their preferences,” doctors said.
Health authorities have warned that while the risk of the Delta variant causing severe symptoms in unvaccinated adults remained, even the youngsters who were unvaccinated were at equal risk and if the country aimed to return to normalcy, then this age group needed to be vaccinated soon.
“If they have any fears they can always reach out to the medical workers who will explain the advantages of the vaccine. Believing in myths that it causes infertility and then having preferences to travel overseas is not what we need right now,” a senior doctor said.
It is alleged that some self-claimed ayurvedic practitioners were capitalizing on the situation by selling unproven herbal remedies claiming that they would help cure the virus. Some youngsters were victims of this, doctors alleged.
Meanwhile, the overall COVID-19 situation in the country had improved within the past few days with the number of oxygen-dependent patients reducing considerably. In the IDH alone there were oxygen-equipped beds that were free while the infection rate had also reduced.
Health authorities have urged people to continue maintaining health guidelines. (Jamila Husain)