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 Basseterre, St. Kitts, April 23, 2021 (SKNIS): Several young persons in St. Kitts were armed with additional information about the science and effectiveness of the COVID-19 vaccine and why, to date, it remains the best way to end the global pandemic that has claimed more than three million lives around the world.
On Thursday, April 22, 2021, the Department of Youth Empowerment hosted a sensitization session for youth volunteers, members of youth groups, and other partners at the CUNA Caribbean Conference Centre.
Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Youth, Sports, and Culture, Valencia Syder, welcomed the participants to the forum. She added that the briefing was part of the ministry’s regular engagement to educate and register feedback from youth about critical local developments.
“For you to make an informed decision you have to be informed with sound and accurate information,” she stated, encouraging a candid exchange between the audience and Dr. Cuthbert Sebastian Jr. who facilitated the discussion.
A number of pertinent questions were asked including what a vaccine is, how it works, what the risks of blood clots are and the available medication to treat such, and what herd immunity is, and more.  
Dr. Sebastian shared about the issue of blood clots. He said that although we are in the middle of a global pandemic caused by COVID-19, life is still going on and many people are dying from various conditions.
“People still get heart attacks, strokes, and blood clots,” he stated. “Actually, 1 in every 1,000 adults are expected to get a blood clot and it [the risks of blood clots] goes up the older you get.,” he stated.”
While there is no definitive data to suggest that anyone has died as a result of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, Dr. Sebastian warned that more than three million persons have died from COVID-19 and being fully vaccinated is the best way to avoid getting seriously ill or dying from the virus.
The young people in attendance thanked Dr. Sebastian for providing the science behind the vaccine.

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