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Caribbean Situation Report February 2021

Rep. Dominicana
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• Vaccination campaigns were launched in February 2021 across many R4V Caribbean sub-regional countries where four of the five countries included refugees and migrants in their national vaccination plans.1 On 18 February, Aruban frontline workers started receiving COVID-19 vaccinations, along with 10 famous press personalities, in the ‘high-risk’ category who encouraged the general population to receive the vaccines, while the DVG (Department of Health) continued its campaign promoting vaccines as safe. Days later, immunizations started for individuals in the 60+ category . All Venezuelans, regardless of migratory status will have access, and the national vaccination plan was published, underscoring steps on signing up completing a pre-registration in an MFA Government office where persons would receive a QR code and subsequently, an appointment date for the vaccine. Some Venezuelans in Aruba expressed concern to R4V partners, as they cannot access medical atention2 , should they have a negative reaction to the COVID-19 injections. Similarly, individuals in Curaçao will receive COVID-19 vaccines regardless of legal status. One R4V partner is a part of the organizing commitee which indicated that Curaçao intends to complete vaccination of everyone on the island by 1 June. Prioritized persons started registering via a hotline since 19 February. Subsequently, all other persons over 18 will register separately. The first batch of vaccinations are for persons over 60 and medical front-line workers, for a total reach of 44,000 persons. The Dominican Republic’s vaccine plan focussed on Dominican nationals and is not including refugees and migrants at this stage. In Guyana, refugees and migrants are included in immunization plans; however, prioritization of specific groups has yet to be defined beyond medical staff and high-risk groups, targeted under the initial 20% to receive vaccines through the GAVI Covax facility. Timelines for Venezuelans to receive vaccines remained unspecified. Guyana received its first donation of 3,000 doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccines from Barbados on 10 February. This was allocated to 1,400 frontline health workers; while 200 doses were allocated to CARICOM to reach 100 persons. Furthermore, Venezuelan refugees and migrants in Trinidad and Tobago will receive the COVID-19 vaccine when campaigns are rolled out across the country.

• By the end of February 2021, Aruba registered 7,891 COVID-19 infections, 223 active cases and 73 deaths. Curaçao reached 4,730 COVID-19 infections, with 67 active cases and the death toll stood at 22. Trinidad and Tobago rose to 7,713 cases, reduced to 108 active cases and recorded five more deaths than the previous month, bringing the tally to 139. Guyana