Kampala, Uganda | URN | The Ministry of Health is optimistic that Uganda will get the second consignment of COVID-19 vaccine doses on time despite the shortages experienced globally.
Uganda has so far vaccinated 239,617 people out of the 964,000 doses of vaccines that were received earlier.
Although the government had initially said that the doses would cover 482,000 People, with each getting two injections spaced between eight weeks, the plan was later revised, to allow more people to get the first dose. But soon after the change, the Serum Institute of India, announced the halting of vaccine exports to first, serve their domestic market.
The institute, one of the world’s largest manufacturers of coronavirus vaccines said its production capacity was very stressed. At the time, the institute had an agreement to supply 166 million doses of vaccines to the Indian government, and it feared that it could not have the capacity to meet the production targets.
The announcement triggered panic amongst Ugandans who have had the first shot for the first vaccine, many fearing that the second dose may not arrive in time. But the Minister of Health Dr Jane Ruth Aceng says that there is no need to worry because President Yoweri Museveni and the country is looking for an opportunity to get the vaccine here in time.
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Dr Aceng says that there is hope that the COVAX facility will give Uganda vaccines in early May for both those who got the vaccine and those who didn’t.
The facility committed to providing Uganda with over three million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine in the first half of 2021.
Earlier, several MPs had raised concerns about the second dose of vaccine, saying Uganda had not yet secured the vaccines yet a first-round was almost getting complete.
But the Minister said that there is no health risk if one doesn’t get a second dose of vaccine.