Minister of Health Dr. Frank Anthony says that the Guyana Police Force (GPF) is investigating about 10 cases of stolen and forged vaccination cards. These cards – often referred to as the COVID ‘blue books’ – are given when an individual receives a COVID-19 vaccine.
With the implementation of vaccination requirements to enter most buildings, a 31-year-old driver of the health ministry and a 27-year-old driver attached to the West Demerara Regional Hospital were caught stealing COVID-19 vaccination cards. Both drivers were remanded to prison.
On Wednesday, during his daily COVID-19 update, Dr Anthony revealed that the police force has been investigating about 10 other cases after the ministry would have received information on this activity.
“…we treat reports very seriously and ask the police to go in and investigate,” the Health Minister said. He also urged members of the public to continue reporting such fraudulent activities.
Previously, the local authorities advised people against stealing and forging these vaccination cards. Advisor to the Ministry of Health Dr Leslie Ramsammy cited Section 240 of Guyana’s Criminal Offences Act, emphasising that forgery is an offence.
Meanwhile, Dr Anthony explained that the misuse of these vaccines could have an impact on the treatment of patients.
“… if they get sick with COVID and they end up in the hospital, it can give us a false sense that this person was probably vaccinated when they were never vaccinated and that can skew the results that they are getting.
“…we would expect that persons who were vaccinated would have been doing much better,” Dr Anthony explained.