By Nasir Isa
The Executive Secretary of the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency, Dr Faisal Shuaibu, has stated that Nigeria is planning to procure 20-million doses of COVID-19 vaccines within the first quarter of 2021. The vaccines, according to Dr. Faisal, will be prioritized for health workers, who are at higher risk due to frequent exposure at the frontline.
This disclosure was made during the press briefing by the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19, in Abuja.
Dr. Faisal further assured that Nigeria has taken all the necessary steps of getting the desired quantities of the keenly awaited vaccines through its full enrollment in an international coalition coordinated by the World Health Organization (WHO).
It could be recalled that just recently COVID-19 vaccines produced by two pharmaceutical giants, Pfizer and Moderna, have demonstrated over 90% efficacy in phase 3 clinical trials. The companies are now awaiting emergency authorization by the US’s FDA, pending complete evaluation of the data.
However, already the United Kingdom has purchased large stocks of Pfizer’s vaccine, and initiated vaccination as a measure to contain the spread of the virus. Early reports from UK on COVID-19 vaccination have shown that at least two people have developed allergic reactions, which necessitated the authorities to issue a public warning to all those with strong history of allergy to avoid the vaccine for now.