COVID-19 vaccination to begin in 43 epi-centres – Akufo-Addo
The first batch of Ghana’s COVID-19 vaccines will be given to persons in 43 areas identified as hotspots of the infection, President Akufo-Addo has disclosed.
Three regions with the highest infection rate will start the vaccination programme on Monday, March 2.
“It will be conducted in 43 districts, which are the epi-centres of the pandemic in the country,” President Akufo-Addo elaborated in his 24th update on measures taken to contain the pathogen.
A total of 25 of the epicentres are in the Greater Accra, 16 are located in Ashanti Region, and two in the Central Region, he said on Sunday, February 28.
Ghana was the first country to receive COVID-19 vaccines under the COVAX Facility.
COVAX is co-led by Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), working in partnership with UNICEF as well as the World Bank, civil society organisations, manufacturers, and others.
A total of 600,000 doses of AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine was delivered on Wednesday for a countrywide vaccination at no cost to recipients.
It forms part of an initial tranche of 2.4million vaccines expected from the Serum Institute of India (Coviahield).
Ghana plans to inoculate 20 million, two-thirds of the population, by the end of 2021.
First and Second families to receive COVID-19 vaccines in public
President Akufo-Addo, First Lady Rebecca Akufo-Addo, Vice-President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia and Second Lady Samira Bawumia and some prominent officials will receive the jab publicly on Tuesday to encourage the public to get vaccinated.
Key public officials such as the Speaker and Members of Parliament, the Chief Justice and Justices of the Superior Court of Judicature, Chairperson and Members of the Council of State, the Chief of Staff and senior officials at the Office of the President, and prominent personalities like some Eminent Clergy, the National Chief Imam, the Asantehene, the Ga Mantse, and some media practitioners will also, on Tuesday, take the jab publicly.
Segmentation of vaccination programme
President Akufo-Addo further outlined the vaccination plan, which will be conducted by segmentation.
Group 1 is categorised as “persons most at risk and frontline State officials”.
It includes healthcare workers, frontline security personnel, persons with underlying medical conditions, persons sixty (60) years and above, and frontline members of the Executive, Legislature and Judiciary.
Group 2 is made up of other essential service providers and the rest of the security agencies.
It includes water and electricity supply services, teachers and students, supply and distribution of fuels, farmers and food value chain, telecommunications services, air traffic and civil aviation control services, meteorological services, air transport services, waste management services, media, public and private commercial transport services, the Police Service, Armed Forces, Prisons Service, Immigration Service, National Fire Service, CEPS Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority, and other members of the Executive, Judiciary, and Legislature.
Group 3 consists of the rest of the general public, that is all persons over eighteen (18) years, except for pregnant women. The final group, that is Group 4, will include pregnant mothers and persons under the age of eighteen (18), and they will be vaccinated when an appropriate vaccine, hopefully, is found, or when enough safety data on the present vaccines are available.
Special arrangements will be made for persons with disabilities who fall within these groups.
“So, from Tuesday, 2nd March, to Monday, 15th March 2021, the Ghana Health Service will begin deployment of the six hundred thousand (600,000) AstraZeneca vaccines, with persons in Groups 1 and 2 being the target of this first vaccination campaign,” President Akufo-Addo added.
COVID-19 infection update
As of Friday, 26th February 2021, the total number of active cases stood at 5,444 at a daily infection rate of 400.
The total deaths are 607, with 24 persons being managed for critical cases.
Out of 69,350 schools in the country, 207 have reported cases of infections, with the active cases at 282.