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Coronavirus

COVID-19: Pandemic has forced African nations to neglect other health challenges – WHO

WHO is concerned that the COVID-19 pandemic is forcing African countries to stretch their already limited healthcare capacities.

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Dr Tedros Adhanom, Head of the World health organization (WHO), COVID-19

The World Health Organization has warned that the COVID-19 pandemic is forcing African countries to stretch their already limited healthcare capacities, as the organization revealed 362,000 pregnant women in Nigeria missed their ante-natal care from March to August.

This was disclosed by WHO in a virtual press conference on Thursday.

READ: Instruct EFCC, ICPC to monitor spending on Coronavirus, group tells Buhari

The WHO said even though Africa has recorded the least casualties and infections, the crisis has hit the continent’s healthcare sector, as other critical sectors have had little attention due to the pandemic.

A preliminary analysis by WHO indicates COVID-19 is hitting other health services really hard,” said Matshidiso Moeti, Africa Director for the WHO.

READ: Data war: MTN dwarfs Airtel, Glo, 9mobile, with 1.59 million new subscribers in August

The WHO warned that the initial lockdowns contributed to a 50% drop in healthcare services in Africa, as over 1 million children in Africa missed vaccinations for measles between January to August, compared to 2019.

Matshidiso Moeti also disclosed that 362,000 pregnant women in Nigeria could not get ante-natal services from march to August, due to Nigeria’s stretched healthcare sector.

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READ: School Feeding Programme: We found N2.6 billion in private accounts – ICPC

So while COVID-19 is not overwhelming African health facilities in the way initially predicted. It is really stretching already resource-limited health systems,” Moeti said.

READ: Despite billions on agriculture, food inflation up by 108% since 2015

She added that vaccinations for Polio and Measles need to be restarted, to prevent relapse on the gains the continent has made in combating the diseases as a result of increased health services in remote areas.

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Coronavirus

Nigeria committed to procuring 29 million Johnson & Johnson covid-19 vaccines

The Nigerian Government is still committed to acquiring 29.59 million doses of Johnson & Johnson covid-19 vaccines through the Afrixem Bank AVAT initiative. 

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AstraZeneca suspends COVID-19 vaccine final stage trial over safety concerns, COVID-19: J&J starts vaccine trials on humans after success on monkeys

The Nigerian Government says it is still committed to acquiring 29.59 million doses of Johnson & Johnson covid-19 vaccines through the Afrixem Bank AVAT initiative.

This was disclosed Mrs Zainab Ahmed, Minister of Finance at the recent ‘Collaborative Africa Budget Reform Initiative (CABRI) General Assembly webinar.

What the Minister said

“Therefore, the supplementary budget for COVID-19 vaccines will cover the cost of additional vaccines over and above those provided by COVAX, as well as the full cost of operations and logistics for delivering the vaccines around the country.

Already, the sum of N29.1 billion has been released from the Routine Immunization budgetary provision (Service Wide Vote) to the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA) as an advance for the operational cost of deployment of the COVID-19 vaccines. The N29.1 billion represents about 52 percent of the amount required over 2021-22,” she said.

READ: FG releases N29.1 billion advance for deployment of Covid-19 vaccines

She added that FG plans to vaccinate 70 percent of eligible (18 years and above) Nigerians over the 2021 and 2022 fiscal years, with the COVAX agreement willing to cover 43.1 million of the eligible population.

In case you missed it

The World Health Organization (WHO)  announced the approval of China’s Sinopharm vaccine for Covid-19 vaccination. The vaccine is reported to have 79% efficacy against covid.

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Coronavirus

Covid-19: FCT to end vaccination May 14

The FCT Primary Health Care Board (FPHCB) announced it would end the first round of Covid-19 vaccination on the 14th of May.

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The FCT Primary Health Care Board (FPHCB) announced it would end the first round of Covid-19 vaccination on the 14th of May.

This was disclosed by Mrs Salome Tor, Programme Officer, FPHCB in a meeting with newsmen on Friday.

She disclosed that the FCT received 248,400 doses of vaccine and has successfully vaccinated  96,559 as of May 6, 2021, thanks to a team of 169 health workers.

“We have a minimum of three health workers in each team, they have all been distributed into the six area council. All the government hospitals in the FCT are selected locations for this vaccination.

“We also have temporary fixed post team; these are special teams who visit various organisations or special location. We urge people to go and vaccinate before the exercise closes,” she said.

The FPHCB added that Nigerians still need to get vaccinated and urged for the media’s participation in spreading awareness of the vaccination drive.

“We need at least seven out of 10 people to be vaccinated to be able to withstand the SARS 2 virus of COVID-19. I consider that as a deliberate hazard that will become hazardous to the community, so we advise that people shouldn’t put themselves in that position, they should go ahead and take the vaccine.

“We started this vaccination in FCT on March 15, the country at large started it on March 5, we have not seen anybody who complains of the vaccine in FCT, maybe blood clot or death.

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“Why are people waiting, they should go ahead and take this vaccine in the health facility within the 62 wards of the FCT, the vaccine is safe,” the healthcare board said.

What you should know

The National Primary Health Care Development Agency announced that as of May 7, 2021, it had vaccinated 1,615,787 residents, which is 80.3% of its proportion.

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