Govt in vaccination push after man in 50s dies from Covid-19
The Gibraltar Government on Thursday urged people who have not been vaccinated to get jabbed following news that a man in his early 50s with no underlying health problems had died of Covid-19.
The man, who was a visitor and was not vaccinated, had been in the critical care unit of St Bernard’s Hospital for what the government described as “a significant amount of time”.
He died on Thursday morning from multi-organ failure and sepsis as a result of SARS-CO-2 infection.
The man’s death will be recorded in Friday’s statistics as a death from Covid-19, bringing the number of deaths in Gibraltar related to the virus to 97 since the start of the pandemic.
In announcing the sad news, the government underscored the need for continued care despite Gibraltar having lifted most of its Covid-19 restrictions following a community-wide vaccination program earlier this year.
“It is with a very heavy heart that we must confirm the sad news of a death in our community from Covid-19, a relatively young person who was otherwise fit,” Chief Minister Fabian Picardo said.
“My condolences go to the family and friends of the deceased.”
“Please remember that whilst Gibraltar has lifted all but a few restrictions, Covid-19 is still all around and is potentially fatal, especially for those who have not been vaccinated.”
“Please continue to take every precaution recommended by Public Health, maintain good hygiene and call 111 at the first sign of symptoms.”
Later on Thursday, No.6 Convent Place renewed its appeal for anyone who was not vaccinated to register for the jab.
The Covid-19 vaccination program in Gibraltar has been successful, with more than 80% of the eligible population of 16 and above having already been vaccinated.
The vaccination programme has now restarted for anyone in the eligible age groups who has not been jabbed.
“The tragic death of a visitor to Gibraltar in their early fifties and with no pre-existing other chronic or severe disease is a stark reminder to all of us of the risk posed by Covid-19,” No.6 Convent Place said in a statement.
“One of the most powerful and effective tools available to medicine when it comes to infectious disease is vaccination.”
“We are lucky enough to have a very effective vaccine available to protect us from Covid-19 and its most dangerous complications, such as severe disease and death.”
“We need to make sure to take advantage of that. Please, get vaccinated if you have not done so already.”
“Covid is not over yet and any Covid death, which would have most likely been prevented through vaccination, is a death too many.”
On Thursday, another five resident cases of Covid-19 were detected, according to the government’s latest statistical update.
Two of those cases were not vaccinated, both in the 10 to 20 age group.
There were a total of 86 active cases of Covid-19 on the Rock on Thursday, with 67 results pending and 196 people in self isolation.
Most of them were of the highly infectious Delta variant, with 17 cases yet to be processed to identify the strain.
Of the active cases, two were in the Covid-19 ward in St Bernard’s Hospital and two inn the critical care unit.
Since the start of the pandemic, Gibraltar has detected 5,314 cases of the virus.
Anyone over the age of 16 wanting to register for vaccination should now do so at: https://www.gha.gi/registration-for-anyone-over-the-age-of-16/
If the parent or guardian of any child who is considered clinically vulnerable has not yet been contacted, please register your interest here: https://www.gha.gi/registration-for-high-risk-individuals-in-the-12-15-age-category/
EDITOR'S NOTE: This article has been corrected to refelect the fact that the man was not a resident of Gibraltar, as originally reported based on initial information from the Gibraltar Government, but a visitor.