RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – The Gibraltar government recently announced the cancellation of “official Christmas parties, official receptions, and similar gatherings” and advised the public to avoid social events and parties for the next four weeks. Outdoor venues are recommended over indoor venues, touching and hugging are discouraged, and masks are recommended.
“The dramatic increase in the number of people testing positive for Covid-19 in recent days is a stark reminder that the virus is still very prevalent in our community and that it is everyone’s responsibility to take every reasonable precaution to protect ourselves and our loved ones,” said Health Minister Samantha Sacramento.
The increase in cases, described by the government as “exponential,” comes despite Gibraltar having the highest vaccination rate in the world.
More than 118% of Gibraltar’s population is fully vaccinated against Covid-19. This figure exceeds 100% due to the doses received by Spaniards who cross the border to work or visit the territory every day. The entire adult population of Gibraltar has been fully vaccinated since March, and masks are still required in stores and on public transport.
Gibraltar currently distributes booster doses to the over-40s, healthcare workers, and other “vulnerable groups” and even administers vaccines to children aged five to 12.
Similarly, well-vaccinated countries have also reported surges in Covid-19 positives recently. In Singapore, where 94% of the eligible population has been vaccinated, cases and deaths spiked to record levels in late October and declined slightly.
In Ireland, where about 92% of the adult population is fully vaccinated, Covid-19 cases and deaths from the virus have doubled since August.