Lusaka – The Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) and Johnson & Johnson have sealed an agreement for the latter to expedite the supply of 400 million COVID-19 vaccine doses.
The 400 million doses constitute part of the one billion doses to be distributed under the African Vaccine Acquisition Trust.
Africa CDC Southern Africa regional co-ordinator Dr Lul Riek this week said, “We have seen in several countries such as the United Kingdom, Israel and the United States where the prevalence rate of the COVID-19 has reduced due to the application of the COVID 19 vaccines.
“These countries are vaccinating their citizens quicker and faster and the number of hospitalisation and deaths have reduced drastically because the vaccines protect and keep one from getting seriously ill even if they do get the COVID 19.”
Dr Riek disclosed that 22 million of the 38 million AstraZeneca vaccine doses secured for Africa had been administered, representing 1.8 percent of total needs.
The UN World Health Organisation has expressed concern over the poor supply of vaccines to developing nations, and how they are being hoarded by wealthy countries – something that Namibian President Hage Geingob and his South African counterpart Cyril Ramaphosa have branded “vaccine apartheid”.