Mr Kwaku Agyemang-Manu, Minister of Health says the success of vaccinating persons of 15 years and above would be possible through a collective effort of the citizenry.
He said vaccines saved lives and could not but emphasised the importance of vaccination in health since it was evident that the single most important public health activity contributing to the health of children and adults all over the world was vaccination.
Mr Agyemang-Manu made the remark during the launch of Ghana’s COVID-19 Vaccination Month on Tuesday in Accra on the theme, “Protect Yourself, Protect your Family, Get Vaccinated Now Against COVID-19”, and December declared as COVID-19 vaccination month.
He said vaccines in general was a great tool in preventing diseases hence for COVID-19, vaccines had become an important tool in the fight against the disease and offering real hope of bringing the pandemic under control.
Mr Agyemang-Manu said the country joined the community of nations on 1st March, 2021 to intensify the global effort to stem the Covid-19 pandemic by launching the roll-out of vaccines as an additional preventive measure to already existing protocols; face masks, physical distancing, hand washing with soap under running water and the use of hand sanitizers.
He said the country had recorded its first Omnicron case on the 21st November, 2021 at the Kotoka International Airport but no sample had been found in the communities.
The Minister said the country had started the second phase of the vaccination campaign, expanding the roll-out to the general population in order to achieve herd immunity and reduce the burden of the disease in the country.
“To ensure that the target of vaccinating about 20 million people been achieved, the government through the COVEX facility, bilateral and other multilateral arrangements has secured over 12 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines which were being deployed across the country and other substantial quantities of these vaccines have been received in the last two weeks,” he stated.
He said the end of the pandemic was far from sight therefore it was necessary for people to get vaccinated since the vaccines were available at the various health facilities with trained health personnel to attend to individuals.
He added that mobile teams would move to towns and villages where they would be located at schools, churches, mosques bus stops, barriers and market areas to vaccinate people.
Mr Agyeman-Manu assured the public that all the vaccines currently deployed in the country were safe, effective and offered protection against COVID-19 disease, hospitalization and death and also had authorisation from the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA).
He called on all stakeholders, leaders, civil society organisations to join the fight to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the country, adding that the success of the vaccination exercise requires joint effort.
The Minister said all health workers, all security personnel, all staff and students in secondary and tertiary institutions, workers in government institutions including parastatals and all commercial drivers are not vaccinate.
He stated that persons who did not vaccinate would not be allowed to visit night clubs, beaches, sports stadium and restaurants.