The first phase of the COVID-19 vaccination has come to an end on Tuesday as officials said a total of about 26,000 people have so far taken their initial jab of the Oxford Astrazenica vaccine.
The Humanitarian Times ontained this exclusive information today at the officials at the State Primary Healthcare Development Agency.
The officials said they were instructed to carry out the administration of the vaccine within ten days, which ended on Wednesday, March 31.
Borno state received 75,510 doses of the Oxford Astrazenica vaccine on March 10, 2021. And it was expected that the entire dose is administered in the first phase.
But during the cause of the vaccine administration, the officials said the state received a communication from the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency that only 50 per cent of jabs be dispensed as the remaining half be retrieved and stored for the second round of the jab.
“We are now looking at the vaccine accountability as we prepare for the second phase of the vaccination for those that have received the first jab, said Dr Babagana Abiso, a director in charge of disease control at the PHCDA.
“The vaccination ended yesterday for ten days.
“We received 75,510 doses for the state; and initially we were told to give out all the doses received during the first phase. But during the cause of the vaccination we received a message from the National office that the doses received are to be used for the first and second jab. So, we were asked to use 50 per cent of what was given and stop the vaccination.
“We are to prepare for the second dose. We stopped all vaccination as at yesterday and we are now looking at vaccine accountability which involves retrieving the unused vaccine; at the end we will know what we have on ground.”
Dr Abiso who spoke to The Humanitarian Times on behalf of the Executive Director, Dr Mailafiya, revealed that there are 113 established vaccination centers across 25 of the 27 local government areas of Borno.
He said some of the centers had exceeded the 50 per cent seal before the communication came from the national office.
Of course some the centers have exceeded the 50 per cent limit before the message came through that it should be stopped at that point.”
He said the second dose is expected to start 8 weeks from the day the last persons received the vaccine.
“So 8 weeks from March 31, we will start the second dose.
Dr Abiso said the same officials did not experience any serious challenges during the first phase of administering the jabs.
“The challenge was zero or minimal because we have a lot of partners in the state, like WHO, UNICEF, Action Against Hunger, Intersource, IRC and othrs, who are always willing to support the entire activities.
“Borno administered 26,000 jabs of the 75,510 Oxford Astrazenica vaccine,”
As at Wednesday, we have vaccinated about 26,000 persons, even though we have not tidied up the last figures which needed to be uploaded on our server.
The Humanitarian Times wondered why the Nigerian government had to alter its earlier pronouncement that the 4 million doses of the Oxford Astrazenica vaccines would be given to the same number of people in Nigeria.
Though officials at the PHCDA did not give any explanation on why the rules were being changed in the middle of the game, some health experts with impeccable knowledge offered a plausible guess as to why that decision is being taken.