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Argentina and the UK host Joint Covid Vaccine Webinar with focus on Latin America and the Caribbean

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#Caribbean – December 17, 2020- Argentina and the UK hosted a virtual seminar on access to vaccines in Latin America and the Caribbean addressing the portfolio of emerging vaccines against Covid-19, the challenge of equitable distribution and how best to tackle vaccine disinformation.

On 14 December 2020, Argentina’s Health Minister, Ginés González García and the UK’s Minister of State for the Americas, Wendy Morton MP opened the virtual seminar “Vaccine profiles, distribution challenges and countering vaccine disinformation in Latin America and the Caribbean”.

The event brought together senior officials and medical experts from across the region to discuss efforts to bring the Covid-19 pandemic to an end and how best to ensure equitable access to Covid-19 vaccines.

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Representatives from 25 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean and 11 nations from other regions joined leaders from the Pan-American Health Organisation (PAHO), Gavi – the Vaccine Alliance, The Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), the Caribbean Health Agency, and The Vaccine Confidence Project.

Doctor Seth Berkley, Gavi CEO, updated attendees on the rapid progress of the COVAX Facility, the global initiative working with governments and the pharmaceutical industry to ensure that all countries, no matter their economic circumstances, will have fair and equitable access to vaccines. Both Argentina and the UK back the COVAX Facility and its work to pool the international community’s collective resources, to share and mitigate risks, and to expedite vaccine development and manufacturing.

Diverse Portfolio

The seminar reviewed the emerging portfolio of Covid-19 vaccine candidates and the importance of a diverse range of safe and effective vaccines to enable distribution and delivery at the scale required to end the acute phase of the pandemic. Given the global scale of that challenge, the answer will not lie with one successful vaccine or one single country; a wide range of vaccines, as is being supported by the COVAX Facility, is needed to take into account the many different country contexts and to ensure diverse population groups can be reached as quickly and effectively as possible. Participants addressed the urgent need for investment in specialised distribution infrastructure for that mass vaccination effort, both in the short and long-term, to ensure that we have the structural resilience in place to tackle Covid-19 and future health emergencies.

The event also shared emerging best practice on efforts to counter disinformation and vaccine hesitancy, factors which risk prolonging the crisis by inhibiting people taking up Covid-19 vaccines. Participants agreed transparency, openness and proactive and positive communications were key to overcome vaccine hesitancy and combat disinformation.

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This UK-Argentina seminar is the third in a series of joint events with the region. Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Minister Wendy Morton, representing the UK, said:

“I am delighted that the UK is hosting this event with Argentina, a key partner in the global and regional response to Covid-19 playing a vital role in vaccines development and manufacturing in Latin America and the Caribbean.

The UK is committed to ensuring a truly global response to Covid-19, both through events like today’s and through our investment in the world’s multilateral response, including the COVAX Facility. We are proud backers of COVAX as the best mechanism to deliver a truly global response to the pandemic and to realise our goal of equitable access to safe and effective vaccines for all.”

Argentina’s Health Minister, Ginés González García said:

“The COVID-19 pandemic is more than a health crisis, it is a human crisis that has revealed, as never before, the vulnerabilities of health systems around the world. However, it provides a unique opportunity to rethink more equitable, inclusive and sustainable societies”.

The UK has pledged up to £548m to the COVAX Advanced Market Commitment, which supports access to vaccines for lower and middle-income countries. This is in addition to the UK’s commitment to COVAX as a self-funding nation.

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Caribbean News

It’s the 10GB of Christmas with Digicel

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#TurksandCaicos, December 1, 2022 – Digicel rewards customers with more this Christmas and all throughout 2023 with 10GB any use data every month.

The holiday season is a time for being thankful, so Digicel has taken on an attitude of gratitude and is thanking customers by rewarding them with more from now until the end of 2023.

Through Digicel’s exclusive Christmas plans, customers will get 10GB of data every month, for all of 2023, when they buy and stay on the plan. This also goes for new customers who have bought a SIM and/or those who take advantage of the Ultimate Christmas Combo to get a brand new discounted Samsung A23 smartphone and Christmas plan.

Customers can look forward to more data; more minutes; more rewards and prizes with Pick & Win in the MyDigicel app; more speed, reliability and coverage on the fastest network; and more savings and discounts on our devices and SIMs.

Addison Stoddard, CEO of Digicel Turks & Caicos said, “We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again, it’s the Christmas that keeps on giving at Digicel, so we’re offering our customers the gift that keeps on giving when they sign up and stay on any of our Christmas plans; whether it be a 3, 7 or 30 Day Prime Plus Bundle. Every month, new and existing customers who activate a Christmas plan this holiday season will get 10GB any use data, on us, when they remain on the plan all year long. For us, it’s all about continuing to put our customers first, and thanking them for every interaction they have with us.”

Customers can also win more in the MyDigicel app through Pick & Win, the new gamified way to be rewarded for any interaction with Digicel. Whether it’s switching to join the Digicel family, buying a plan, or paying bills in full and on time, customers will get the chance to Pick & Win lots of cool prizes

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Bahamas News

Cruise Trippers bought big with Carnival Cruise Line on Cyber Monday

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By Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer

 

December 1, 2022 – Cyber Monday isn’t just for electronics!  Potential vacationers broke a Carnival Cruises Cyber Monday record for bookings, purchasing 50 per cent  more tickets than 2019’s pre-pandemic shopping day.

The cruise line announced the record bookings on Tuesday, November 29th.

The company cited a successful launch campaign of the new Carnival Celebration which visited Grand Turk recently and the three additional ships joining the fleet over the next 18 months, as major ticket pushers.

“The Cyber Monday sale activity showed consumer demand across the fleet, and we were particularly pleased with the booking activity for Carnival Venezia’s new year-round service from New York, and our new extended six-month program for Carnival Magic out of Norfolk,” said Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line.

“Our very successful naming ceremony for Carnival Celebration on November 20 and all the media coverage it generated clearly kept Carnival top of mind as vacationers got started on their holiday shopping yesterday.”

They say the pent-up demand for cruising has manifested in multiple ways in 2022, as Carnival was the first major cruise line to have its entire fleet back in operation and it now has more rooms than it was sailing in 2019.

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Bahamas News

The 2022 Atlantic Hurricane Season comes to an end

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By Shanieka Smith

Staff Writer

 

December 1, 2022 – The 2022 Atlantic Hurricane Season has come to an end after 14 named storms. Two of these developed into major hurricanes, Hurricanes Fiona and Ian.  Still the death toll was over 300 and damage costs are nearing $55 billion.

The US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) described the Season as one of the most unique. The pause in storms that occurred during the season was a rare occurrence that scientists believe was due to lowered atmospheric moisture and increased wind shear over the Atlantic Ocean.

“The 2022 seasonal activity fell within NOAA’s predicted ranges for named storms and hurricanes in both our pre-season outlook and updated outlook,” said the lead hurricane forecaster at NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center, Matthew Rosencrans.

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