The Ghana Health Service and its development Partners have launched the 6th National COVID-19 Immunisation Days Campaign in Accra.
The launch is another series of National COVID-19 Vaccination Days Campaign to take place from 20th to 24th January 2023.
Dr. Patrick Kuma-Aboagye, the Director-General of the Service in his address to the media, stated that it is regrettable to note that despite the significant strides chalked over the past years, the country is still not out of the woods. He called for the rekindling of a strategic partnership to reach a more significant proportion of the vaccine-eligible population that remains unvaccinated.
He urged the media to keep spreading the good news about the need for the vaccines to get into the arms of people, with a better understanding of the benefits of the COVID-19 vaccines.
Dr. Kwame Amponsa-Achiano, the Manager for the Expanded Programme on Immunization of the Service in his speech, stated that the COVID-19 pandemic continues to wreak havoc on healthcare systems and economies globally making the country vulnerable to a spillover. He said challenges faced included misinformation and disinformation; low COVID-19 infection risk perception and responding to multiple outbreaks- Marburg, polio, Yellow Fever, Monkey Pox, and others.
Dr. Achiano explained that COVID-19 vaccines can protect the majority of people from hospitalization and death, which is why as many doses need to be administered around the world rapidly, and equitably as possible.
In a speech read on behalf of the World Health Organization’s Country Rep, Dr. Francis Kasolo let out that the COVID-19 pandemic continued to rage on with the current surge being driven largely by the Omicron sun-variant XBB. 1.5. He explained that some countries, including China, have been severely affected and many others continue to record an increasing number of cases.
Ghana was routed as one of the countries that effectively managed to control the COVID-19 pandemic. It was further explained that this was achieved largely through the use of non-therapeutic measures, including face masking, social distancing, and hand hygiene. It was emphasized that WHO continues to recommend the use of masks irrespective of the local epidemiological situation, given the current spread of COVID-19 globally.
Fiachra McAsey, Unicef Representative to Ghana in a speech noted that Unicef was also playing a key role in promoting the COVID-19 vaccination, both in the run-up to and during the rounds. He said they will support social mobilization and monitoring activities related to the vaccination days, including, with the support of MTN, sending sms messages to about 20 million people to provide information about the COVID-19 vaccination days. Unicef will also support GHS and Partners with traditional and social media coverage and will dispatch teams to support the COVID-19 efforts across 12 regions.
Mr. McAsey stated that the festive season was over or winding down and there were expected spikes in the virus, he, therefore urged all to make a New Year’s resolution to ensure all are vaccinated.
Also present were influencers who shared their testimonies on their experience with COVID-19 disease.
SOURCE: PR UNIT, GHS