It is the most populous country in Africa, but also one of the most backward countries on the continent in terms of corona virus vaccination: only 3% of the population in Africa. Nigeria He received two doses of the Covit-19 vaccine.
The rate is also very low compared to other countries in Africa. The South AfricaFor example, 24% of the population is fully vaccinated.
However, Nigeria has a large stock of obsolete vaccines – according to Reuters – that share could reach one million.
The Nigerian Ministry of Health says all expired vaccines will be withdrawn and destroyed.
What vaccines were sent to Nigeria?
Nigeria, like other African countries, struggled to access the Covit-19 vaccine in early 2021 because manufacturers gave priority to rich countries that had previously signed agreements.
Many African countries have relied on Kovacs’ plan, which earlier this year struggled to meet its vaccine delivery obligations, especially in Africa.
In recent weeks, however, distribution has improved: rich nations have begun to release their holdings, mainly through the Kovacs system.
Nigeria received 700,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine from the UK in August, 800,000 from Canada in September and 500,000 from France in October.
At the same time, Nigeria received 4 million doses of Moderna and 3.6 million doses of Pfizer from the United States.
How long can vaccines be kept?
AstraZeneca dosages are generally safe for at least six months from the time of manufacture under appropriate conditions. But the Nigerian Ministry of Health says some of the donated vaccines have been delivered on the verge of expiration, which poses serious logistics challenges.
“This left us with very little time, and in some cases, weeks to use them – with time to transport, distribute and deliver to users,” said Health Minister Osaki Ehnir.
He also said that there are occasional interruptions as vaccines come one after the other.
The government now claims that expired vaccines will be destroyed and that it politely refuses all vaccine donations that may be available shortly before or expire.
Are outdated vaccines a problem in other countries?
Me Democratic Republic of the Congo Unused vaccines will be distributed in other countries to prevent expiration.
In July, the World Health Organization (WHO)WHO) About 450,000 doses have expired in eight African countries and will be administered due to their short shelf life.
The WHO and the African Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have recently called for a change in the way vaccine donations are made to avoid wastage.
“Planning in the short term and guaranteeing dose consumption with a short lifespan will exponentially increase the logistics burden on already overburdened healthcare systems,” they said in a statement.
Both organizations requested that the donated vaccines be available for at least two and a half months before reaching the target country. Recipients know one month in advance of donations.
In addition, they expect those quantities to be shipped with additional essentials such as syringes.