Cayman is just a few days away from the deadline of 9th June – the last day on which people here can get their first dose, to be in time to get their second dose before the ultimate expiry of the vaccine on 30th June. The Government has stated it will look to open up the borders when at least 70% of those eligible take up the vaccine, but it is looking increasingly likely that that figure will not be reached, with just 64% the current figure (at the time of writing). This puts Cayman in an impossible position – unable to open its borders for fear the Covid virus will overwhelm the populace who has chosen not to protect itself, while at the same time risking serious and long-lasting damage not only to Cayman’s economy but also its reputation, as buyers and investors look to alternative, more proactive countries in which to place their money.
It’s time for Cayman to take up some innovative and immediate action, if we are to reach absolutely everyone on island willing to be vaccinated. This means taking a leaf out of our neighbour, Bermuda’s books, which has had some success with mobile vaccination sites. Our wonderful Public Health professionals need to go to each district of Cayman, literally knocking on doors to see if people would be willing to be vaccinated in their homes. At the same time, we need to offer taxi services for people who might be thinking of getting vaccinated but who, for whatever reason, cannot make it to the vaccination centre.
We have to make it as easy as rolling out of bed for those who might be currently sitting on the fence as to whether it would be a good idea to protect themselves and their loved ones, particularly their elderly loved ones, from a potentially deadly disease, but who might be persuaded if the vaccination process literally came to their door.
This is one of the most serious crises to ever hit the Cayman Islands (as it has been for the rest of the world) and we have no time to waste in getting our people vaccinated to the fullest extent before we ever have a hope of getting back to normal again.
We have to act quickly, creatively and decisively.