More than one million doses of the COVID-19 vaccines have so far been administered in the Central Region.
The Central Region Health Directorate said of the 1.7 million people expected to be fully vaccinated in order to reach herd immunity, 32 percent had been fully vaccinated while four percent had taken the booster shots.
The Health Directorate has, therefore, reiterated calls on residents yet to get the jab, to get themselves fully vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus to ward off the disease.
Dr (Mrs) Akosua Agyeiwaa Owusu-Sarpong, the Regional Director of Health, at a press briefing in Cape Coast, said many people had suddenly developed cold feet towards the vaccination exercise owing to the semblance of normalcy in the region coupled with persistent misconceptions about the vaccines.
She debunked claims that taking vaccine was no longer necessary, stressing that the virus was still around.
Dr Owusu-Sarpong insisted that the vaccines were potent and safe and the most effective method to win the war against the pandemic, contrary to the misconceptions that they were unsafe.
It helped to prevent severe illness, hospitalisation and death in case of infection, she stressed.
“We can only eliminate COVID-19 if the entire population gets vaccinated,” she observed.
The Central Region recorded its first case of COVID-19 in April 2020, and had since had 5,820 cases with some deaths and no active case currently.
She noted that the Service had embarked on series of strategies to reduce the spread of the virus to its barest minimum.
Dr Owusu-Sarpong said the vaccines were available at various health facilities and vaccination centres across the region and advised citizens to patronise same.
She further expressed disquiet over the fact that various COVID-19 protocols such as hand washing and the wearing of nose masks had been thrown to the dogs.
Encouraging the practice of hand washing in particular, she noted that aside COVID-19, hand washing was also an effective measure against filth-causing diseases like cholera.
“Let us not stop washing our hands and using the sanitisers. I have observed that many institutions have stopped putting the veronica buckets in front of their offices. Let us revisit the practice because the virus is still with us,” she said
Dr Owusu-Sarpong urged the media to promote and send positive messages across to ensure that the populace developed positive attitudes towards the vaccination exercise.
She said the media needed to intensify advocacy and create awareness to drive the exercise.