Adonis Pio, Communication Officer at NPH Dominican Republic
COVID-19 has had a huge impact across the world during the past 18 months. It has claimed over 4.5 million lives, with 4,000 deaths reported in the Dominican Republic. There is still no known cure for the virus, although methods like strict hygiene protocols and managing any symptoms can help to limit its spread. NPH Dominican Republic has been implementing mitigation methods like these at Casa Santa Ana since the beginning of the pandemic and continues to do so today.
When the Dominican Republic authorities first began to apply the COVID-19 vaccine in February 2021, the medical team at NPH began liaising with the Ministry of Public Health to ensure that employees at Casa Santa Ana could be vaccinated as soon as possible, especially those working with our vulnerable populations.
Luckily, the Ministry of Public Health began vaccinations at NPH in April, sending a brigade of nurses to the clinic at Casa Santa Ana to apply the first dose of the SINOVAC vaccine, administering the second one in May. To date, 116 employees have received two doses, while another 46 have chosen to get third.
Doctor with her patient in the hospital
Boy in red sweater holding a book
Boy sitting on a chair getting vaccinated
Since then, the Ministry of Public Health has also begun vaccinating our youth at Casa Santa Ana. So far, 140 children have received the first and second doses, the latter of which took place in July.
Dr. María Reyes, the medical coordinator at NPH Dominican Republic, says, “We thank God that the situation is under control regarding the vaccine, as well as the Ministry of Public Health who has supported us in the effort to vaccinate our staff and youth. However, we maintain the internal protocols in the home to avoid any outbreaks.”
The home continues to check people and staff who enter the facility, insisting on handwashing, the use of a face mask, cleaning with alcohol, taking temperatures, and, in some cases, requesting that visitors show their vaccination card.
“The Ministry of Public Health provides support and advice about how to protect our populations at NPH, which we are grateful for. Together, we can overcome this pandemic,” adds Dr. María Reyes.
Ryan, a 16-year old currently in high school at the Casa Santa Ana school, expresses his delight at being vaccinated. He says, “I have more freedom. We must be careful, but there is less chance of us getting COVID-19. I can see my family and friends more easily now.”
“Get vaccinated,” concludes Ryan, “We need to end this pandemic and return to normal.”
NPH would like to thank the Ministry of Public Health for coordinating and carrying out the COVID-19 vaccination of our youth and staff. We would also like re-confirm our commitment to ensuring healthy lives and promoting well-being for everyone of all ages, as expressed under the United Nation’s SDG 3 – Good Health and Wellbeing.
*Names of minors have been changed to protect privacy.