ENTEBBE AIRPORT: Uganda has today (Friday March 5th 2020) received the first batch of Covid 19 vaccine which includes 864,000 doses of the AstraZeneca #Covid-19 vaccine donations from COVAX facility.
The Vaccine batch was received by Minister of Health Dr. Jane Ruth Aceng, flanked by UNICEF’s Representative to Uganda Munir Safieldin and World Health Organisation (WHO) representative to Uganda Yonas Tegegn Woldemariam at the Entebbe International airport.
“An exciting day for us as Uganda received the initial batch of 864,000 doses of AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccines manufactured by the Serum Institute of India and shipped via the COVAX facility. Thank you to all who made this possible.” Health minister Aceng said upon receiving the batch.
According to Aceng, the vaccines will be first administered to frontline workers including the security personnel, health workers and teachers in different institutions of learning.
UNICEF Representative Safieldin said Covid-19 vaccines arrival marks a historic step towards the goal to ensure equitable distribution of vaccines globally, in an unprecedented effort to provide at least 2 billion doses of Covid-19 vaccine by the end of 2021.
“UNICEF is pleased to be a key partner in the COVAX Facility. We have been preparing for this moment by working closely with all partners to make sure that the necessary logistical and planning arrangements are in place,” he said.
“I am delighted to note that Uganda is among the top ten African nations receiving the first doses from COVAX, thanks to the excellent level of preparedness put in place by the Government of Uganda,” he said.
The Astra-Zeneca Covid-19 Vaccine will be launched on Monday, 8 March and vaccination will kick off on Wednesday, 10 March.
Vaccines will be given to eligible persons 8 weeks (56 days). However, this can be extended up to 12 weeks as recommended by WHO Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunizations.
The vaccination campaign target in Uganda stands at 21,936,011 people equivalent to 49.6 percent of population of Uganda compared with the target population earlier communicated (60 percent and 27,000,000 people) in line with WHO and Africa CDC global guidance.
The Covid-19 vaccine is given intramuscularly on the left upper arm – 0.5mls each.
All health workers from public, Private not for profit and private health facilities will be the first group to receive the vaccines.
The second group will be the teachers. All Teachers will be required to access vaccines from the nearest Public Health facility starting from HC III up to a National Referral Hospital.
The third category will be all persons above 50 years of age. The next category eligible for vaccination are the 18 to 50-year olds who have the following underlying health conditions: hypertension, Diabetes, cancer, organ diseases such as Liver, Kidney or heart disease. Each category will be alerted on the days on which to report for vaccination
“Government Health center IIIs, IVs, District Hospitals, Regional Referral, National Referral Hospitals and specialized Institutions have been designated as vaccination service points in each district and City. Eligible persons will access their vaccines from any of these points,” she said.
All persons eligible for vaccination will be required to provide a National Identification Card in the case of Ugandan citizens or a passport in the case of non-Ugandans.
Currently, there have been 115,094,614 confirmed cases of Covid-19, including 2,560,995 deaths, reported to WHO. A total of 249,437,147 vaccine doses have been administered however none of the population has been vaccinated in Uganda. Uganda has 40408 confirmed deaths and 334 deaths.