Guinea-Bissau: Guinea-Bissau has received the first delivery of 28,800 COVID-19 vaccine doses through the COVAX Facility.
The country had initially received 787,200 syringes and 7,875 biosafety boxes from the COVAX Facility with the partnership of UNICEF.
It was learnt that the COVAX initiative has sent the 28,800 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine on April 10 from the Serum Institute of India, from Mumbai, India, to Lisbon, Portugal.
According to Guinea-Bissau High Commissioner for COVID-19, Dr Magda Robalo Correia e Silva, the national vaccination of COVID-19 vaccines in the country will get a boost with the delivery.
“The undertaking of the National Vaccination Plan against COVID-19 began on April 2 and will gain momentum with this delivery.”
The Senior Country Manager of Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, Dr Pietro Di Matte asserted that the delivery of the vaccine is a significant moment for Guinea-Bissau, the African continent and COVAX.
“This is taking us closer to our common goal of ensuring equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines. Gavi is glad to see the ambition of the COVAX Facility concretising with this first of delivery that will protect the most vulnerable, including healthcare workers on the front lines in the fight against this pandemic in Guinea-Bissau”.
The UNICEF Guinea-Bissau Representative, Ms Nadine Perrault said that UNICEF is proud to be part of the donors to make vaccines accessible to frontline health workers and the most vulnerable population of Guinea-Bissau.
“Let us bear in mind that as more families and communities are vaccinated, we are all safer. Nevertheless, it is crucial that, alongside the vaccination, we also continue to fortify public health measures such as correctly using masks, handwashing, and physical distancing”, she stated.
The COVAX Facility
The COVAX Facility is a partnership between CEPI, Gavi, UNICEF, WHO, EU and many others
The Facility is working to ensure equitable allotment of COVID-19 vaccines globally.
The Facility aims to distribute at least 2 billion doses of COVID-19 vaccines by the end of 2021 to countries around the world.
COVAX has been very active in working with some of the world’s poorest countries.
The COVAX Facility will also help in assisting with the development of national vaccination plans, support for cold chain infrastructure, as well as stockpiling of half a billion syringes and safety boxes for their disposal, masks, gloves and other equipment to ensure that there is enough equipment for health workers to start vaccinating priority groups in the beneficiary countries.