A delivery of 3.92 million AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines are set to arrive in Nigeria on Tuesday, March 2, the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) revealed.
According to a joint statement released by NPHCDA, the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the delivery will be the first batch of doses to arrive in the country, courtesy of the COVAX facility, which has been responsible for the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines to low-income countries.
This makes Nigeria the third country to receive the vaccines after Cote d’Ivoire and Ghana.
The delivery is part of the 16 million planned doses expected to be delivered in batches over the coming months.
“The arrival of the vaccine will enable the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) to commence the vaccination of Nigerians in priority groups, starting with the frontline health care workers,” the agency said.
The country plans to vaccinate at least 70 per cent of Nigerians aged 18 and over in four phases within two years.
Dr Faisal Shuaib, the Executive Director/Chief Executive Officer of NPHCDA, said the agency is fully equipped and ready to administer the doses to those eligible.
“We have a robust cold chain system that can store all types of COVID-19 vaccine in accordance with the required temperature,” Dr Shuaib said.
“We are therefore confident that we will have a very effective roll-out of the vaccine, starting with our critical healthcare workers, who are in the frontline in providing the care we all need.”
As of Sunday, Feb. 28, Nigeria had recorded 155,657 cases of the coronavirus, with 133,768 recoveries and 1907 fatalities.
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