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Aug 10, 2021

Dr. Cuellar Says Belize Must Prepare for Lambda Variant

Fernando Cuellar

And while the test results from Baylor University confirmed that a number of COVID variants are indeed present in Belize, and have been here for months, there is one of particular concern for the unvaccinated.  The lambda variant has been spreading rapidly in South America since its earliest documented samples were detected a year ago in Peru. By mid-June, it had been detected in twenty-nine countries and territories.  The World Health Organization says lambda carries several mutations with potential increased transmissibility or increased resistance to neutralizing antibodies.  On Monday night’s Ministry of Health and Wellness’ “Get the Facts, Dispel the Myths” show on Channel Five, Internist Doctor Fernando Cuellar said that the biggest enemy of the vaccine is disinformation from social media posts and not taking the shots is putting one’s self at more risk than not.


Dr. Fernando Cuellar, Internist, Belize Medical Associates

“The vaccine has shown, especially now in August, it’s showing that people who are hospitalized and dying are the unvaccinated. There’s no question about that data. Everywhere you see it, in the States, in Belize also. We’re seeing that people who are seriously ill are the people who are unvaccinated. Mind you, the vaccine does not stop you from getting COVID. That’s a no-brainer; it’s a question we don’t even need to quarrel about. You get the vaccine, okay, you can still catch the virus; you can still get sick, but you’re not supposed to get seriously ill, or your risk of dying is very, very minimal. That needs to be established.  We have to prepare for lambda and we have to prepare with good public health measures. That’s the best defence. Actually, the technology in vaccines is now ramping up – the studies – to stop the transmission. They realize that just by preventing serious illness and diseases is not enough, so they’re trying to tweak it some more so that it stops the transmission.”


Doctor Cuellar added that sometimes people are vaccinated right around the same time that they are infected and begin to show signs of the infection days later.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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