The Executive Director, National Primary Health Care Development Agency, Faisal Shuaib has again assured Nigerians of the safety of the COVID-19 vaccines being administered across the country, stating that no death has so far been recorded.
According to him, after more than three million vaccinations, 13,267 people have experienced mild to moderate side effects, while 4,708 have experienced moderate to severe side effects.
“It is however important for me to repeat that Nigeria has not recorded any case of death directly linked to COVID-19 vaccination.
“Cases of mild, moderate and severe reactions that have been recorded are expected from normal vaccination, and people who experienced any of these have since recovered and are doing well,” he said.
He explained that no one should be discouraged by the fear of side effects being reported, adding that the long term benefits of getting vaccinated far outweighs the risk of brief side effects.
Speaking during a press briefing in Abuja, Shuaib said that a total of 2,099,568 people have been vaccinated with their first doses while 1,005,234 have received their second doses of the Oxford/AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine as of 24th June 2021.
He also disclosed that the Agency is working closely with the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control on Adverse Event Following Immunization response.
Shuaib also said that the government is experiencing frustration regarding the global vaccine supply.
According to him, not only have there been huge challenges with respect to vaccine manufacturers producing enough vaccines for the world, but there also has been great inequity in terms of distribution.
“Most countries of the world have received few, and in some cases no, vaccines. This is a problem that needs to be solved urgently and we are communicating this very clearly to our international partners on behalf of Nigerians.
“Recently, we were encouraged by the swell of contributions and pledges from major nations into COVAX.
“Rich nations of the world are showing greatly increased recognition that there must be more supply produced and it must be distributed much more fairly, and they are becoming active in solving this,” he said.
The Country Representative of World Health Organisation, Walter Kazadi Mulombo in his remark said that it is important for persons experiencing side effects after being vaccinated to report immediately to health authorities.
According to him, there is an urgent need for nations to scale up manufacturing capacity to curb the increased cases of COVID-19 globally.
“WHO will continue to provide support to Nigeria government in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, especially through vaccine deployment.
“Technical assistants are being deployed both at the state and federal government levels to ensure effective vaccine roll out,” he said.