From Sulaiman Lawal, Lafia
The National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) has said that 3,487, 298 eligible persons in the country have been fully vaccinated against Covid-19, having received their second jabs.
NPHCDA’s Executive Director, Dr. Faisal Shuaib, disclosed this during the inauguration of mass vaccination exercise for Nasarawa State on Friday in Lafia.
Dr. Shuaib said that as at Friday, a total of 6,242, 224 eligible persons in the country had received their first doses of the vaccine.
“From the data above, it is clear that Nigeria is still far from reaching its target of vaccinating almost 112 million of its eligible population,” he said.
Dr. Shuaib said that the Federal Government came up with the mass vaccination campaign in view of the festive period characterised by large gatherings with risk of spread of the virus.
He said the campaign was geared towards creating access to the vaccines in order to ward off a potential fourth wave of the pandemic.
He said the mass vaccination campaign was a carefully designed service delivery strategy to rapidly increase the number of fully vaccinated eligible people and fast track the country’s economic and social recovery.
“The main aim of the mass vaccination campaign is to vaccinate 50 per cent of Nigeria’s eligible population by January 2022,” Dr. Shuaib added.
In Nasarawa State, the Executive Director pointed out that based on data from the National Population Commission (NPC), about 1.5 million persons in the state were eligible for the Covid-19 vaccination.
“As it stands, we have only been able to vaccinate 8.1 per cent of eligible Nasarawa residents with the first dose and only 5.3 per cent are fully vaccinated.
“This is below our target which is to vaccinate all eligible residents with the Covid-19 vaccines in order to ensure full protection against the deadly virus.
“In order to address the logistical problems of getting to vaccination site by Nigerians, the Federal Government, in collaboration with the state government, has expanded the vaccination sites in Nasarawa State.
“The Covid-19 vaccines are now available in our public health facilities, designated private health facilities, shopping malls, open markets, schools, general hospitals, tertiary health institutions, recreation parks, religious centres, motor parks and other designated sites,” he said.
Dr. Shuaib encouraged Nasarawa residents, who are 18 years and above to come out en masse to receive the vaccines in order to protect themselves, their loved ones and communities.