A number of children in Trinidad and Tobago has contracted the Covid-19 virus within the past three months.
So said Health Minister Terrence Deyalsingh during Wednesday’s virtual Covid-19 press conference.
“Over the past three months we’ve had 14 children under the age of one year coming down with Covid-19. And 11 of those children are under three months old.”
He noted that these toddlers are not going out to work or anywhere, which means the virus is basically coming home and meeting them and sending them into the hospitals.
He stated that around 50 per cent of the parents of these children are Covid-positive.
“We don’t have the hard number yet but the vast majority is unvaccinated. What is happening is that the virus is being brought into the home setting and infecting the elderly, and now very young babies.”
Calling the development disturbing, the Health Minister said the country has also recorded four Covid-19 deaths among persons under the age of 18.
He said to address this new development the principle of herd immunity need to step in.
“The principle of herd immunity is that everybody in the herd who are vaccinatable should be vaccinated to prevent those who cannot be vaccinated, from contracting Covid.
Deyalsingh stated that it’s the same principle for vaccination for infectious diseases, in that the herd needs to be vaccinated to protect those few members of the population who cannot be vaccinated, from contracting an infectious disease like Covid.
Stating that the virus is coming home and meeting these young babes in arms, Deyalsingh added that all parties need to get involved.
”We continue to urge all those who are vaccinatable, that is over 12, to be vaccinated. We still have a very long way to go to avoid what is happening in other countries.”
He said as the country move forward into the Christmas season, which is a time of celebration, citizens need to be even more careful.
“You’re hearing all the warnings from healthcare experts across the world as they move into their holiday period, and what is the extra risk for persons in the Northern climate is that cold weather drives people inside and that is a way to spread the virus.
”In Trinidad and Tobago, we are lucky to have a climate that allows us to be outside, and we want to continue to urge people in this Christmas season to be extremely careful, especially if you’re unvaccinated and you’re being invited to a home, wear your mask,”
He noted that if members of the public plan to host Christmas functions they should try to have them outdoors or open their windows and get as much ventilation as possible, so that the country can come through this Christmas period and go into January and February as it did last year.
“We did particularly well last year Christmas, and we can do it again,” Deyalsingh noted.