Gibraltar, which was recently lauded for being ‘the most vaccinated country on earth,’ has cancelled the territory’s official Christmas celebrations due to a surge in COVID cases.
From September 30, the British territory on Spain’s southern coast, vaccinated all but 1.04% of its eligible adults, well exceeding the 100% mark if including vaccinated non-residents.
However, in an official statement, release November 12, the territory announced their “intention to cancel […] a number of official Christmas celebrations, official receptions and similar gatherings” towards the end of the year due to a steady increase of positive Covid cases.
“There are 359 active cases of Covid-19 in Gibraltar (published 12 November), 57 new cases today (from 11 November), 5 hospitalizations and a total of 440 in isolation. This partly reflects the high rate of screening tests for residents of Gibraltar, which allows us to detect many more positive cases than elsewhere,” the government said.
“This means that it is essential for the public to behave in a prudent and reasonable manner bearing in mind that we are still in a global pandemic and people are losing their lives every day all over the world.”
According to reports, the territory has administered 94,937 COVID jabs so far, including 39,815-second doses, with an additional 14,241 booster jabs – a vaccination rate of 139.5%.
As of November 22, Gibraltar has recorded more than 6,891 cases out of a population of around 34,000 people. There have been 98 deaths with Covid since the beginning of the “pandemic.”
Pfizer’s COVID-19 booster vaccination campaign is currently underway in the territory, with the government “strongly encouraging” residents to register their interest to receive their next dose.
Minister for Health, the Hon Samantha Sacramento, said: “The vaccination programme for 12-15-year-olds and the booster vaccination programme are now underway, and Gibraltar received 4680 more doses this week. Everyone who is eligible for a vaccine or a booster is strongly encouraged to take up the offer when they are called.”