COVID-19: Guess How Many Vaccines The US Has Given The Caribbean? – commentary

Photo: Indian vaccines as sent to Barbados earlier this year. The Caribbean is still waiting on any from the US.

News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, Thurs. May 20, 2021: Want to take a wild guess of how many vaccines the United States Joe Biden administration, with a Caribbean roots vice-president, has so far given to the Caribbean?

If you guessed ZERO, then you are absolutely correct.

As the region battles with a new wave of rising cases and deaths, the Biden administration have ignored multiple governmental requests and again turned its back on its Third Border.     

Not a single vaccine from its millions of stockpiled AstraZeneca doses have gone to the Caribbean. In fact, with the exception of 2.5 million doses sent to Mexico for help with the border crisis, the US has given no other country any vaccines.

The vaccine story in the Caribbean and the Americas is that the Biden/Harris administration continues to ignore the Caribbean and its desperate need for COVID-19 vaccines as death toll rises in countries like Trinidad and Tobago. Several Caribbean leaders have appealed directly to the administration for help but they have all been ignored. They include St. Kitts & Nevis, Antigua & Barbuda and Trinidad and Tobago.

Trinidad and Tobago has seen deaths in just 19 days in May alone soaring to 162. Fourteen deaths alone occurred yesterday following 23 Tuesday.

The country’s total COVID-19 cases now stand at 17,669. Almost 6,700 of those cases are considered active.

But China and Russia are only too happy to step up. According to the Atlantic Council, China has sent over 8.1 million doses of vaccines to the Caribbean, including 8 million to the Dominican Republic and 100,000 yesterday to Trinidad and Tobago.

Russia has sent some 40,000 doses to Guyana.

India, which is now battling its own COVID-19 crisis, has been the English-speaking Caribbean’s biggest vaccine donor. It has donated some 40,000 across the region.

PAHO Director Carissa F. Etienne on Wednesday called for closing the “glaring gaps” in access to COVID-19 vaccines in Latin America and the Caribbean by relying less on imports and more on expanded regional production of medical products including vaccines.

Pointing out that only 3% of people in Latin America and the Caribbean have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, Dr. Etienne asserted that the shortage of vaccines is a “symptom of our region’s overdependence on imports for essential medical supplies. Less than 4% of medical products in use during the COVID response have come from the region.”

PAHO has delivered more than 12 million COVAX-procured vaccine doses to countries in Latin America and the Caribbean. COVAX is the global alliance for equitable distribution of COVID-19 vaccines. Another 770,000 doses are on the way to Central American and Caribbean countries, Dr. Etienne said.

Although COVID-19 infections generally have declined in the past month in the region, new cases and deaths are still on the rise in many countries, Dr. Etienne said. Many Caribbean countries – including the Bahamas, Haiti and Trinidad and Tobago – have seen COVID-19 deaths double in the last week. Costa Rica, Panama, and parts of Honduras are reporting dramatic increases in new infections.

Infections are increasing in Bolivia, and French Guiana while the “decreasing trends” in Brazil in previous weeks have paused. “Despite overall reductions in most South American countries, some hotspots in Argentina and Uruguay saw a doubling of cases and deaths in the last week,” she said.

“We urgently need more vaccines for Latin America and the Caribbean, a region that has been put to the test by this pandemic,” she emphasized.

The question is, will the Biden administration answer that call?

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  • Bernard  On 05/22/2021 at 8:06 am

    Meanwhile, half of the US population refuses to get vaccinated resulting in the expiration of millions of doses that are thrown out.

  • JoE  On 05/22/2021 at 6:41 pm

    In the last couple of weeks, I’ve lost all respect for Joe Biden and indeed for the USA and its values…no matter what they espouse in the public domain. He has failed to articulate clearly the ethnic cleansing and indeed genocide against the Palestinian people for fear of upsetting a common thug called Bibi who no doubt gave the green light to the recent provocation in East Jerusalem, as preliminary for another bout of warfare, so as to confirm his stay in power for now, And as we all guessed, doesn’t give a fig about sharing vaccines until embarrassed into doing so. What kind of poor excuses for mankind have power in that country? I have less respectful words in my mind even as I write this. Is he truly better than Trump or just a more suave, doddery version of “America First”?

  • Jo  On 05/22/2021 at 6:52 pm

    I’ve lost all respect for Joe Biden. Not only has he failed to clearly articulate an honest version of the ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian people as he continues to support his friend Bibi in his policy of Zionist restoration of “Jewish sovereignty” of “the old land of Israel” but he’s proved himself to be clueless about the Southern hemisphere in general..and if not clueless, uninterested. Where is this Catholic’s sense of caring for the poor? Is he just another variant of Donald Trump’s policy of “America First”?

  • Kman  On 05/22/2021 at 11:35 pm

    All American Presidents since Reagan, and even before him, have always blindly support Israel. Heck, even Obama did. This will never change anytime soon. Kennedy got asasinated for going after Istael about their nucelar missile factory. They still deny having such a facility even today, and no international bodyhas the gonads to take them to task. The UN is useless as tits on a bull.
    Today, if one looks at a Zionist posing as a Jew for too long, one would be called an Antisemite.

    A[[ Semites are Jews, but not those claiming to be Jews are Semite. They are Zionists, aka, fake Jews.

    Like the president of Turkey said, Israel needs to be taught a lesson once and for all.

    It is about time that all non white nations come together and take care of their own. That would be a giant wake up call for the so called wesrern nations.

    • Chris  On 05/23/2021 at 12:25 am

      Why is Israel (Mid-Eastern bully) so locked-in on America’s teat? Why is America still Israel’s sugar daddy? Isn’t time that they stop being a welfare recipient at taxpayers’ expense? They receive billions of dollars annually for no justifiable reason!! Utterly shameful!

    • guyaneseonline  On 05/23/2021 at 12:40 am

      To Kman:
      I am still trying to understand why this entry was posted here.
      Maybe you wanted it posted with the blog entry on the Israel-Gaza conflict

  • JoE  On 05/23/2021 at 1:27 pm

    Good question but the issues happen to come together at the same time..creating a need for reflection on the role of the US in areas that matter or should matter to it.

    By the way, to all…I tried changing my online name and the first post under Joe didn’t go through. So I switched back and now I see both are posted. Will continue under JoE in future.

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