The minister of state for primary health care Ms Margaret Muhanga has revealed that the additional 335,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine received from the government of Ireland through bilateral arrangements will help cover receivers of the Astrazeneca second dose.
“We have been receiving a lot of AstraZeneca, many people have been waiting for this to get the second dose. To-date, the government has received a total of 5,129,763 doses through donations of which 2,152,840 doses have been utilized countrywide. We now have 3.3 million doses in the country including what we have received today, distribution of the remaining doses is ongoing,” she said.
Ms Muhanga made the remarks on Thursday while receiving Uganda’s 12th consignment of vaccines at Entebbe International Airport. She said the doses would boost government’s mass vaccination campaign across the country.
“Our response strategy currently focuses on vaccinating as many Ugandans especially the 4.8 million most vulnerable category that we target to reach out at the end of this year so that we can open up our economy fully by January,” she said.
Ms Muhanga said the mass vaccination campaign that started with the Kampala metropolitan area on September 27, will be rolled out to other districts starting on Monday (October 4).
The Deputy Head of Mission at embassy of Ireland in Uganda, Ms Nicole Mchugh, said the donation is part of Ireland’s desire to work with the government of Uganda to ensure that the vulnerable categories are vaccinated and also ensure the safe reopening of schools.
“We understand the vaccination of teachers is critical in achieving this goal, as chair of the education partnership group, Ireland is working closely with the ministry to support school reopening and prioritise teachers’ for vaccination,” she noted.
Ms Mchugh said Uganda’s vaccination campaign will be a game changer in opening up society and ensuring people are safe as it was in Ireland which had a successful vaccination of it’s 5 million population.
“We see vaccines keep people out of hospital, we believe strongly in vaccine equity and importance of a global response. This is prompted not only by our desire to see global vaccine equity to ensure no one is left behind but also our belief in the UN/WHO mantra that no one is safe until we are all safe” she said.