There are no prizes for the first position here but it’s worth celebrating that yesterday, Ghana became the first country
to receive the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine from COVAX (COVID-19 Vaccines Global Access). The country received 600,000 doses.
Why it matters:
This is a major milestone in combating the spread of COVID-19 in Africa and a step forward in COVAX’s drive to provide 600 million vaccines for 20% of Africa’s population. COVAX, which is co-led by the World Health Organisation (WHO) and GAVI Alliance, was launched in 2020 to mobilise resources for innovative and equitable access to COVID-19 diagnostics, treatments and vaccines.
Who won’t be needing this vaccine?
In January, the South African government bought 1.5 million AstraZeneca vaccines but early findings by scientists and researchers showed that it only offered minimal protection from infection by the new variant. The AstraZeneca vaccines were afterwards replaced
with nine million doses of the Johnson and Johnson (J&J) vaccine.
Who’s really looking forward to receiving the Vaccine?
After a long delay, the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine was approved for use in Nigeria by the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) last week. The Nigerian government had said it was expecting 58 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines from COVAX and the African Union’s AVATT(Africa Vaccine Acquisition Task Team) platform.
Based on a distribution report
shared by COVAX earlier in the month, a total of 336 million doses were announced to be donated to over 120 countries. There are still over 30 African countries on the list yet to receive their vaccines.