While there is no scientific evidence of any adverse effect brought on by consuming alcohol and taking the Russian, Sputnik V COVID-19 vaccine, Guyana’s Health Minister Dr Frank Anthony is urging the populace to exercise caution.

Several months ago, articles were published in the international media quoting a Russian health official urging persons to abstain from alcohol for two weeks before taking Sputnik V and an additional 42 days after vaccination.

Dr Anthony, during his daily update today, said that there is “no scientific rationale why people should abstain for that prolonged period.”

However, like with all vaccines, he noted that administers would prefer people not to drink before they come for a vaccine.

“The reason being, is that if we are going to observe to see whether or not someone has side-effects from the vaccines, then we need that person to be sober. So, we haven’t seen in any of the scientific literature that vaccine interacts in any adverse way with alcohol, but out of an abundance of precaution, I would urge people who are coming for a vaccine – at least over the 24 hours before and 24 hours after – remain sober, so that we can monitor and make sure that there’s no adverse reaction,” he said.

Some 92,410 Guyanese have received their COVID-19 vaccines as of yesterday, with an average of 6,000 doses being administered daily. Guyana is now administering vaccines to persons 18 years and older. Dr Anthony said that he expects more persons to come forward as the country experiences a surge in cases.


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