Uganda Gets 100,000 More Covid Vaccines

Nine African countries agree to begin journey towards pooled procurement to increase their access to affordable life-saving vaccines.

By Stephen Otage

Government yesterday received 100,000 additional doses of Covid-19 vaccine which were donated by the Indian government.

While addressing journalists at Entebbe International Airport after receiving the consignment on Sunday, Health minister Jane Ruth Aceng, warned that vaccination does not mean the public should stop following the Covid-19 prevention measures.

"You should stop complacency even after getting the Covid-19 vaccine because you can still fall sick after being vaccinated. But the only thing is that you may not be put on oxygen as it is the case now," she said.

The World Health Organisation country representative, Dr Yonas Tegegn, said the Covid-19 vaccines brought to Uganda were proved safe following rigorous safety assessment by the agency.

Both the serum received on Friday and today are AstraZeneca vaccines manufactured by the Serum Institute of India. Government has so far received a total of 964,000 doses of the vaccine through donations.

Vaccination starts on Wednesday

While receiving the first batch of 864,000 doses of the vaccine on Friday, Dr Aceng said countrywide vaccination will start on Wednesday with healthcare workers in public health facilities.

"The initial group will be health workers in public health facilities followed by those in private facilities. This will be done from March 10 to 15. Thereafter, we shall have teachers and the exercise will begin from March 16 to 19," she said.

The ministry estimates that at least 150,000 health workers and 550,000 teachers will have to be vaccinated in the said period.

Registration of the said priority groups, who are considered to be at higher risk of Covid-19 has been finalised, according to Dr Aceng.

"We will use our tested strength of decentralised health services to deliver the vaccines to the target population in record time. We have adequate cold chain capacity that have been prepared to receive the Covid-19 vaccines at the National Medical Stores (NMS)," she said.

She added: "The vaccines have been allocated to districts and NMS will deliver on schedule. District teams have been trained to safely administer the vaccines to the target population."

Earlier, the ministry said all persons eligible for vacation will be required to provide a national identification card in the case of Ugandan citizens or a passport in the case of non-Ugandans.

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