244,800 Johnson & Johnson doses received by Ghana from AVAT

Some 244,800 doses of the single-shot Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine have been delivered to the Ministry of Health.

The donation in Accra on Thursday, September 2, is part of the initiative by the AU-African Vaccine Acquisition Trust (AVAT).

In all, 422,400 doses of Johnson & Johnson vaccine have now been received by Ghana under the AVAT.

Ghana has now received from all sources, a little over 2 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines. They comprise AstraZeneca, Johnson & Johnson and Sputnik V vaccines.

AVAT was established by the African COVID-19 Vaccine Acquisition Task Team, set up in November 2020 under the African Union chairmanship of President Cyril Ramaphosa, President of the Republic of South Africa

It is part of the African Union’s COVID-19 Vaccine Development and Access Strategy, and its goal of vaccinating at least 60 per cent of the African population with safe and efficacious vaccines against COVID-19.

Under the AVAT, AU member countries, including Ghana, have pooled resources to collectively purchase vaccines.

Ghana on Saturday, August 7, received its first batch of Johnson & Johnson single-shot doses under the African Vaccine Acquisition Trust (AVAT).

The doses were part of a total of 6.4 million vaccine doses shipped to African Union Member States in August 2021.

Ghana was among the first ten African countries to receive vaccines through the partnership. The first country to receive the vaccines under the AVAT programme was neighbouring Togo.

The Deputy Minister of Health Tina Gifty Mensah and the Director-General of the Ghana Health Service Dr Patrick Kuma-Aboagye were at the airport to receive the vaccines.

The vaccine deliveries are part of the historic COVID-19 vaccine advance procurement agreement signed on 28 March 2021 by AVAT for the purchase of 220 million doses of the Johnson & Johnson single-shot COVID-19 vaccine, with the potential to order an additional 180 million doses.

“The agreement and the start of deliveries mark the first time that the African Union Member States have collectively purchased vaccines to safeguard the health of the African population,” a joint press release announcing the arrival of the vaccines at the Kotoka International Airport said.

The AU’s agreement with Johnson & Johnson was made possible through a $2 billion facility provided by the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank), who are also the Financial and Transaction Advisers, Guarantors, Instalment Payment Advisers and Payment Agents, and the support of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) who coordinated the alignment of the AU Ministers of Finance on the financing arrangements.

The United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) supported by the African Medical Supplies Platform (AMSP) is providing logistical and delivery services to the various African Union Member States.

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