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No legal action for refusing vaccines

2 years ago

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  • Health Ministry urges public to get vaccinated against Covid-19 
  • Ministry prepared to dispel vaccine myths via counselling 
BY Buddhika Samaraweera Although no legal action can be taken against those who refuse to receive Covid-19 vaccines, the Health Ministry has requested the public to obtain Covid-19 vaccines, considering the prevailing situation. Speaking to The Morning, the Health Ministry’s Communications Director, the Public Health Services Deputy Director General and the Disaster Preparedness and Response Division Head Dr. Hemantha Herath said that people should volunteer to receive any vaccine including the Covid-19 vaccines, but added that no legal action could be taken against those who refuse to receive the Covid-19 vaccines. He also pointed out that in order to take legal action against individuals who refuse to be vaccinated, legal provisions should be introduced. “However, the health sector is not a sector that operates under such legal frameworks. Even the vaccines given to children have not been made mandatory,” he elaborated. However, Dr. Herath further added that if anyone has a misconception about Covid-19 vaccines, the Health Ministry would take steps to educate them, thereby encouraging such individuals to receive the vaccines. Misconceptions about vaccination can be dispelled, especially through counselling, he noted. According to the Epidemiology Unit, as of 8.30 p.m. on 26 July 2021, a total of 9,722,331 Covid-19 vaccine doses had been administered in Sri Lanka, including 1,311,127 doses of the Oxford AstraZeneca Covishield (made in India) vaccine, 7,427,542 doses of the Sinopharm (made in China) vaccine, 173,584 doses of the Sputnik V (made in Russia) vaccine, 114,075 doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech (made jointly by Germany and the United States [US] vaccine, and 696,003 doses of the Moderna (made in the US) Covid-19 vaccine. In addition, a total of 5,300 doses of the Sinopharm vaccine had been given to Chinese nationals employed in development activities in Sri Lanka.  

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