Uganda will on Friday 5th March 2021 receive the initial batch of 864,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccines.
The Minister of Health Dr. Jane Ruth Aceng says COVID-19 vaccines will be given to eligible persons 8 weeks apart (56 days), starting on 10th March 2021.
The target population for vaccination in Uganda stands at 21,936,011 persons equivalent to 49.6% of population of Uganda. This is because the vaccines available up to now are not yet authorized for use in persons younger than 18 years of age in whom research is still ongoing.
“If vaccines become available for below the age of 18, the Ministry will update its plan accordingly and inform the public” Minister Aceng said.
Government had earlier set a target of 27,000,000 people Ugandans in line with WHO and Africa CDC global guidance. The minister added that when vaccination commenced on 10th, 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.
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.
“All health workers from public, Private not for profit and private health facilities will be the first group to receive the vaccines. This is because they are at the frontline in the response to the COVID19 pandemic and are vulnerable to infection as has been shown by the statistics of infection (1,892) and death among health workers (19)” the Minister noted.
She added that; “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 old people 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.”
A team of vaccinators will be trained to carryout the vaccinations in all parts of the country.
Uganda will spend USD 162,801,475 Million an equivalent of UGX 582, 475,457 Billion to vaccinate 49.6% of Uganda’s population. The amount arises from cost of vaccines, supplies, handling and storage among other expenses.
Minister Aceng clarified that vaccination is not compulsory and individuals shall be asked to consent before receiving it.