Nigeria is expected to take delivery of the first four million doses of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines today, Tuesday, March 2, 2021.
The vaccines are part of those released by the COVID-19 Vaccines Global Access, COVAX, a global initiative aimed at ensuring equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines.
It is led by Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, the World Health Organization, the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations, and others.
The Executive Director, National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), Dr Faisal Shuaib confirmed the development on Monday.
The Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 has said that Nigerians under the age of 18 years will not receive the COVID-19 vaccines, but those to receive the first phase of the COVID-19 vaccines roll-out in Nigeria are front-line health workers, COVID-19 rapid response teams, laboratory network, petrol station workers and strategic leaders.
According to the Minister of State for Health, Dr Olorunnimbe Mamora, the Federal Government planned to cover 70 per cent of Nigerians within two years and that private organisations were not permitted to procure, distribute and administer the coronavirus vaccines.
To ensure a smooth management of the four million vaccines arriving today, Mamora said the PTF had approved the TEACH strategy and the electronic management immunisation system. He said that the strategy called TEACH approach harnesses all the benefits of traditional, electronic, assisted and concomitant house-to-house registration; adding that it also optimises the use of innovative technology.
Mamora said that the TEACH approach entails traditional method of vaccinating target populations using desk review of available data sources; identifying the vaccination sites and roll out. He described the strategy as innovative to ensure a smooth rollout so that no one was left behind.