COVID-19 Cases Surpass 10,000 in Guyana

Irfaan Ali

224,000 Vaccine Doses Coming

GEORGETOWN, Guyana, Mar 27, CMC — On the same day the total number of COVID-19 cases passed the 10,000-mark, President Irfaan Ali announced that 224,000 doses of two vaccines from Russia and the global vaccine initiative, COVAX, will arrive here next week.

The Ministry of Health reported on Friday there were 109 new positive COVID-19 tests in the previous 24 hours, taking the total confirmed cases to 10,007. Guyana currently has more than 950 active cases.

A total of 10 COVID deaths – nine of them occurring within a three-day period – were recorded for the week, taking the overall death toll to 225.

Meantime, President Ali said the country would receive 24,000 doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine through the World Health Organization’s COVAX Facility on Monday, and 200,000 doses of the Sputnik V vaccine from Russia on Tuesday.

The COVAX-supplied vaccine will be free, but the jabs from Russia will cost Government GUY$800 million (US$3.8 million).

The Government is also working to secure another 200,000 doses of the Sputnik V.

President Ali said the goal is to have the Guyanese population fully inoculated.

“This is the utmost priority for me. Personally, I am taking this on as a task in ensuring that our population is vaccinated and that as quickly as possible, we can return our country to some level of normalcy and get out of this pandemic,” he said.

To date, Guyana has received 3,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine from Barbados and 80,000 from India. The Government of China also donated 20,000 doses of the Sinopharm vaccine.

Guyana is also looking to secure another 149,000 doses of vaccines through a purchase agreement under a CARICOM-African Union pact.