We continue to see multiple deaths linked to COVID-19 in our community.

The vast majority of the deaths are among the elderly who were unvaccinated. 

On Sept. 13, the public was informed of nine deaths linked to COVID-19 over several days. Two were vaccinated among the nine.

The nine deaths included a 29-year-old unvaccinated man and there were two who were in their mid-50s who also were unvaccinated.

But the majority were senior citizens between the ages of 77 and 95.

On Monday, eight deaths were confirmed. And all eight were people who did not get vaccinated against the virus that causes COVID-19, according to authorities.

Two of the eight deaths were people in their 50s. The remaining fatalities were of senior citizens ranging in age from 69 to 80.  

Many of the patients who died had underlying health conditions, but the numbers do show that there are fewer deaths among the vaccinated and those who are younger than 50.

The vast majority of the people in our working-age population are required to get vaccinated through their respective workplaces.

Our senior citizens, mostly no longer in the workforce, remain the most vulnerable and we need to better understand how to keep them safer as the delta variant continues to spread in our community.

Senior citizen centers remain closed and have been for more than a year and a half, so some of our oldest citizens could have been infected by people in their homes who are highly mobile.

Mayors know who the senior citizens are in their villages and have started a phone-calling campaign to urge our manåmko' and other residents to get vaccinated.

The mayors are in a better position to know what's going on in their respective villages so it helps to get the details on why senior citizens are not getting vaccinated while the island overall has a very high vaccination rate of more than 86%.

If transportation is hindering senior citizens from getting vaccinated, this is one area that the government can focus on. Mayors can coordinate with the Department of Public Health and Social Services to identify senior citizens who want to get the vaccine but don't have the means to travel to outreach vaccination sites.

Every bit of effort counts to help senior citizens who want to be vaccinated.


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