Covid-19: FG Decry Low Turn Out At Vaccination Sites

The Federal Government has lamented the low turnout of people at Covid-19 vaccination sites across the country.

Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire disclosed this while replying journalists at a press briefing on COVID-19 Response and Development in the Health Sector held on Tuesday, August 23, 2022 in Abuja.

The Minister who had stated at a previous press briefing that Covid-19 vaccines were not among vaccines the country was planning to start manufacturing, explained that this was needed to exhaust the ones in stock.

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Similarly, the Executive Director, National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA), Dr. Faisal Shuaib who was represented by Dr. Bassey Okposen said: “We have more than enough vaccines, currently we have 26million at the National store, we are also expecting about 29.6 million doses, we do not have any shortage, the only shortage we have is the shortage of arms to give the vaccines to”.

He therefore, pleaded with Nigerians 18 years and above to go to the nearest health facility closest to them and get vaccinated.

Also speaking, the Director General, Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC), Dr. Ifedayo Adetifa stated that it was necessary to adhere to safety measures to prevent mutation of the Covid-19 virus and to also protect high risk people from contracting the virus.

“We realise that as we evolve in our journey with covid, it would become increasingly important to protect the high risk people, so even if you may be considered low risk, you should adhere to safety measures to protect them.

“We do not know everything about this virus. As long as we continue to allow unmitigated transmission of the virus,
by not adhering to safety measures or getting vaccinated, we still stand at a risk that a variant would emerge with properties to deal with us and that is what we do not want to happen.

“We are glad that through vaccination, the protection that is induced has easily disconnected case numbers from hospital cases and deaths, but we need to ensure that we continue to get the protection that we need to end transmission. We do not want a ‘Nigerian Variant’ to start another wave of covid infections in the country”, the NCDC Helsman said.

Dr. Adetifa further stated that Nigeria had 262,748 confirmed Covid-19 cases, 256,518 discharged cases and 3,147 deaths.

Giving the statistics of monkeypox burden in the country, he said: “Here in Nigeria, From 1st January to 14th August 2022, there have now been 530 suspected cases, 220 confirmed cases and 4 deaths have been reported from 29 states”.

Concerning Marburg, he explained that available data suggest that the overall risk of the disease on the Nigerian population was Moderate.

The NCDC Boss further stated, “Nigeria has the capacity to test for the virus at the National Reference Laboratory in Abuja and the University of Lagos Teaching Hospital laboratory Centre for Human and Zoonotic Virology.

“However, we are scaling up diagnostic capacity to other laboratories within our network. We have also heightened surveillance efforts at the point of entry, trained rapid response teams, and amplified risk communication and the NCDC’s Incident Coordination Centre (ICC) is operating in alert mode”, he said.

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