Earlier yesterday, the Minister of Health, Kim Wilson, JP, MP, hosted a virtual press conference and was joined by Mr Ian Stein, PAHO/WHO Representative to Jamaica, Bermuda and the Cayman Islands.
2022 marks the 20th anniversary of Vaccination Week in the Americas (VWA), held from April 23 – 30. Every year as part of VWA, more than 40 countries and territories in the Americas come together to raise awareness of the importance of immunisation and vaccinate their populations, making a special effort to reach people who may not have regular access to health services and people living in urban fringes. VWA has been a key driver of immunisation in the Americas, resulting in more than 806 million people being vaccinated against a range of diseases since 2002.
In partnership with the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), Bermuda is celebrating VWA from April 25 – 29 with the theme, Are you up to date with your vaccinations? #Getallyourshots.
The Region of the Americas will be celebrating the 20th anniversary of Vaccination Week in the Americas April 23rd to 30th
And as part of Vaccination Week in the Americas, more than 40 countries and territories in the Americas come together every year to raise awareness of the importance of immunisation and vaccinating their populations, making a special effort to reach people who may not have regular access to health services and people living in urban fringes.
Vaccination Week in the Americas has been a critical driver of immunisation in the Americas, resulting in more than 806 million people being vaccinated against a range of diseases since 2002.
In partnership with the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), Bermuda will be celebrating from April 25th – 29th, and our theme is, Are you up to date with your vaccinations? #Getallyourshots
The Department of Health will use this week to:
recognise the progress made to reduce many vaccine preventable diseases
that have caused death and disabilities to children worldwide, such as
measles, rubella, polio, whooping cough, and tetanus;
sustain the gains achieved by having our infants and children vaccinated
according to the Bermuda Childhood Immunization Schedule;
build a greater awareness of Vaccination Week in the Americas and
immunisation to promote vaccination as an effective means of combating
childhood diseases; and,
develop strategies for building confidence in vaccination focused on
Like the rest of the world, Bermuda has been living with and managing the COVID-19 pandemic for over two years, and our COVID-19 mass vaccination programme was key to our success in managing this pandemic.
Now that we have moved into living safely with COVID-19, we must focus on sustaining the gains of Bermuda’s vaccination programme through increased coverage of routine vaccinations and by growing awareness.
Bermuda’s 2020 Expanded Programme on Immunization report indicates a decreased uptake of routine vaccinations in comparison to 2019, when there was a substantial increase in coverage compared with 2018. For example, Rotavirus vaccine coverage in 2017 was 72%, in 2018 it was 75%, 2019 87% and in 2020 it fell back to 83%.
Last year, a survey on public confidence in immunisation in Bermuda was conducted, concluding that there is great confidence in immunisation as a health measure, generally, for preventing many diseases.
However, the analysis also revealed there is some decrease in that confidence in immunisation, in the vaccine approval process (of emergency use), and in health
The Child Health Mascot Bermy Germy, along with Department of Health
staff, were on East Broadway this morning and will be on North Shore Road tomorrow waving to bring in the celebrations.
Look out for and join Bermy Germy’s dance walk about town on Wednesday,
Also, there are a number of informational and educational communications the Department of Health will be sharing throughout the week.
We invite parents and the general public to visit one of our health centres for updates on vaccine cards. Register to get the Covid-19 vaccine if you have not already. Get
boosted if you are eligible.
Plenty of reliable and credible research has proven time and time again that fears about vaccinations are unfounded. The evidence available makes it clear that, unfortunately, the complications from vaccine-preventable diseases are worse than people generally believe and may not be worth the risk of not being vaccinated.
Remember, Bermuda: Vaccines Work! They are very effective, safe, and the best
protection against many serious diseases.