New measles vaccine

The Zambian government said on Monday that it has put in place an implementation pathway for the smooth administration of the COVID-19 vaccine.

Director for Infectious Diseases in the Ministry of Health Lloyd Mulenga said the pathway involves administrating the vaccine for people at high risk of contracting the disease such as health workers, old people and people whose job involves interacting with many people such as officials in border entries during the month of February and March.

He told reporters that the ministry targets to vaccinate about 20 percent of the population during the first phase before rolling it into the overall population during the year.

He dispelled reports that the vaccine to be administered was not safe, adding that the administration of the COVID-19 vaccine will be done on a model obtained from previous vaccines such as polio or yellow fever vaccines.

“The evidence that we have of the vaccine we are going to be administering is that it is safe although there may be reactions but these are minor,” he said.

He further said people who will receive the vaccine will be placed on an observation program to monitor how they react to the vaccine so that lessons could be picked.

The government said recently that it will start administering the vaccine next month.

The country has recorded a spike in cases and deaths during the second wave of the pandemic which started last month.

Zambia’s cumulative COVID-19 cases currently stand at 28,596 while 471 people have so far died. Enditem

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