Education Minister says children will not be forced to take COVID-19 vaccines


Daily Observer: Same as for adults, children in Antigua and Barbuda will not be compelled to take the vaccine that is intended to provide some sort of protection against the COVID-19 virus.

Newly appointed Minister of Education Daryll Matthew provided this information during a recent interview with Observer media.

“I don’t know that the government can make it mandatory for anyone, under the current circumstances, to take the vaccine,” he said.

However, he said that his personal belief is that worldwide changes may force many people who are hesitant about taking the vaccine to reconsider their position.

“For example, someone may want to travel to the United States or any other country. I believe at some point in time, we will reach the stage where countries will dictate that you must be vaccinated in order to enter. It happens already with yellow fever and malaria vaccines. I personally believe that COVID-19 will be one of those conditions that will require mandatory vaccines for entry,” Matthew said.

Weeks ago, Health Minister Sir Molwyn Joseph also stated that the use of any used vaccine to treat COVID-19 in Antigua and Barbuda will be optional.

The minister acknowledged that many people are a bit apprehensive about vaccines and vowed that the ministry will ensure that public is provided with the right information so that they could make informed choices.

The ministry held its first public consultation last week at the Sandals Grande Antiguan Resort and Spa to provide updated information about vaccinations and the importance of it. — Observer Media

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  1. Top Pathologist Claims Coronavirus is “The Greatest Hoax Ever Perpetrated on an Unsuspecting Public”

    Top pathologist Dr. Roger Hodkinson told government officials in Alberta during a zoom conference call that the current coronavirus crisis is “the greatest hoax ever perpetrated on an unsuspecting public.”

    Hodkinson’s comments were made during a discussion involving the Community and Public Services Committee and the clip was subsequently uploaded to YouTube.

    Noting that he was also an expert in virology, Hodkinson pointed out that his role as CEO of a biotech company that manufactures COVID tests means, “I might know a little bit about all this.”

    “There is utterly unfounded public hysteria driven by the media and politicians, it’s outrageous, this is the greatest hoax ever perpetrated on an unsuspecting public,” said Hodkinson.

    The doctor said that nothing could be done to stop the spread of the virus besides protecting older more vulnerable people and that the whole situation represented “politics playing medicine, and that’s a very dangerous game.”

    Hodkinson remarked that “social distancing is useless because COVID is spread by aerosols which travel 30 meters or so before landing,” as he called for society to be re-opened immediately to prevent the debilitating damage being caused by lockdowns.

    Hodkinson also slammed mandatory mask mandates as completely pointless.

    “Masks are utterly useless. There is no evidence base for their effectiveness whatsoever,” he said.

    “Paper masks and fabric masks are simply virtue signalling. They’re not even worn effectively most of the time. It’s utterly ridiculous. Seeing these unfortunate, uneducated people – I’m not saying that in a pejorative sense – seeing these people walking around like lemmings obeying without any knowledge base to put the mask on their face.”

    The doctor also slammed the unreliability of PCR tests, noting that “positive test results do not, underlined in neon, mean a clinical infection,” and that all testing should stop because the false numbers are “driving public hysteria.”

    Hodkinson said that the risk of death in the province of Alberta for people under the age of 65 was “one in three hundred thousand,” and that it was simply “outrageous” to shut down society for what the doctor said “was just another bad flu.”

    “I’m absolutely outraged that this has reached this level, it should all stop tomorrow,” concluded Dr. Hodkinson.

    Hodkinson’s credentials are beyond question, with the MedMalDoctors website affirming his credibility.

    “He received his general medical degrees from Cambridge University in the UK (M.A., M.B., B. Chir.) where he was a scholar at Corpus Christi College. Following a residency at the University of British Columbia he became a Royal College certified general pathologist (FRCPC) and also a Fellow of the College of American Pathologists (FCAP).”

    “He is in good Standing with the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Alberta, and has been recognized by the Court of Queen’s Bench in Alberta as an expert in pathology.”

  2. CLAIM: COVID-19 is “the greatest hoax ever perpetrated” and “just another bad flu.” Roger Hodkinson, a pathologist who identifies himself as the former chairman of the Royal College of Physicians of Canada Examination Committee in Pathology, made the comments by phone during a public meeting in Edmonton, the capital of the Canadian province of Alberta.

    AP’S ASSESSMENT: False. Not only is COVID-19 deadlier than the flu, but symptoms can be long-lasting, according to medical experts. Some online posts referred to Hodkinson as a former chairman of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. Hodkinson has never been chairman of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, the group said.

    THE FACTS: On Nov. 13, while city councilors in Edmonton met to discuss extending the law that requires people to wear face coverings in public places, listeners phoned in to oppose the mandate. Among them was a caller who introduced himself as Hodkinson.

    “There is utterly unfounded public hysteria driven by the media and politicians,” said Hodkinson, identifying himself as the former chairman of the Royal College of Physicians of Canada Examination Committee in Pathology and the CEO of a biotech company in North Carolina that sells COVID-19 tests. He went on to call COVID-19 “the greatest hoax ever perpetrated on an unsuspecting public…”

    Hodkinson called COVID-19 just “another bad flu” and said “masks were utterly useless,” also claiming that “there is no evidence base for their effectiveness whatsoever.”

    But health officials widely agree that the coronavirus is much more dangerous than the flu.

    “This [COVID-19] is very different from influenza, much higher mortality, much higher morbidity if you survive it,” said Dr. Luis Ostrosky-Zeichner, a professor of infectious diseases at McGovern Medical School at the University of Texas Health Science Center in Houston. “There’s no sort of long-lasting effects of influenza either. It’s a completely wrong assertion.”

    Hodkinson’s claim that masks are “useless” is false. Studies show that masks work to slow the spread of the virus. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has long advised people to wear masks. In November, the CDC said that masks can also protect wearers who are not infected.

    His false comments were recorded, posted on YouTube and then spread on social media.

    “Top pathologist Dr. Roger Hodkinson told Canadian government officials in Alberta during a phone conference that the coronavirus pandemic is ‘the greatest hoax ever perpetrated on an unsuspecting public,’” stated an Instagram post that shared the false claims. The post had more than 26,000 likes. The Instagram post also states that “testing should stop” because it finds the virus in people who have no symptoms, producing false numbers and “driving public hysteria.”

    According to Ostrosky-Zeichner, a positive COVID-19 molecular test “pretty much nearly assures that you have genetic material of the virus in your system, whether you have the active infection or are recovering from it.”

    On Nov. 20, the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada clarified that although Hodkinson was certified as a general pathologist in 1976, he was never a chairman. “We would like to clarify that Dr. Hodkinson is not nor has ever held the position of chairman of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada,” the organization said in a statement.

    Members of the Alberta Medical Association also refuted Hodkinson’s claims on Twitter on Nov. 23: “The#Alberta Section of Laboratory Physicians endorses the use of masks, hand washing and physical distancing along with all other public health measures to prevent the spread of#COVID19.”

    Hodkinson said that he was CEO of a biotechnology company in North Carolina. He is listed as the executive chairman of MutantDX, which is based in Greensboro, North Carolina. According to the license on North Carolina’s secretary of state’s website, the business is active. However, the address listed on the license leads to a condominium complex.

    The Associated Press reached out to Hodkinson at a business in Edmonton where he is listed as the CEO, but did not receive a response at the time of publication.

    The overall U.S. death toll has reached over 260,000, according to Johns Hopkins University’s coronavirus tracker, and more than 1.4 million deaths from the disease worldwide since the pandemic started.


    This is part of The Associated Press’ ongoing effort to fact-check misinformation that is shared widely online, including work with Facebook to identify and reduce the circulation of false stories on the platform.

    Here’s more information on Facebook’s fact-checking program:

    This too is very interesting.

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