The situation in the Seychelles, an island nation that has suffered from a recent surge in COVID-19 cases despite boasting the world's highest vaccination rate, is going from bad to worse.
Since we last reported on the Seychelles one week ago, the island nation has faced a fresh surge in COVID cases.
The vaccine failure cannot be determined without a detailed assessment, said the WHO. The hike in coronavirus cases has stoked concerns that the jabs might not be helping to suppress the island nation's COVID-19 outbreak. A vaccine failure can't be determined without a detailed study by the WHO, however.
Presently, the health body is in direct communication with Seychelles and working on evaluating the situation, said Kate O’Brien, director of the WHO’s department of immunization, vaccines and biologicals at a briefing on May 10.
The Indian Ocean archipelago nation started vaccinations in January when it introduced the Chinese-developed Sinopharm vaccine. It administered Chinese vaccine shots to 57% of those who were fully inoculated and the rest received vaccines that were made in India.
Since last week, the number of active coronavirus cases has more than doubled to 2,486 people. Of these, 37 percent of the population have received both the vaccine doses, as per the report.
Due to the surge in COVID-19 cases, Seychelles re-imposed curbs last week, including closing schools, canceling sports events and banning mingling of households.
Seychelles' first two positive cases of COVID-19 were confirmed on March 14, 2020. The two individuals were a couple from Seychelles who had returned from a trip to Italy. Aftre this, the country imposed a nationwide lockdown in which most shops, businesses and schools were closed for 21 days in April. The airport was also closed and ships were prevented from bringing tourists.
Finally, with the outbreak threatening to scuttle the island nation's critical upcoming summer tourism season, Seychelles President Wavel Ramkalawan insisted that the island is safe for visiting tourists.
Still, the fact that so many residents are being reinfected with COVID despite being fully vaxxed is raising questions about the efficacy of the Chinese and Indian-made jabs.