Kwara records sixth position in COVID-19 vaccination campaign

Kwara State government has ascribed hesitancy among residents of the state on COVID-19 vaccination to a recorded low COVID-19 vaccination campaign in the state.

Speaking during the flag-off of the SCALES 3.0 COVID-19 vaccination campaign in Ilorin on Monday, the executive secretary of the state Primary Healthcare Development Agency, Dr Nusirat Elelu, who described the development as a huge challenge, said that it slowed down the rate at which the agency wanted to cover and break the transmission of the COVID-19 in the state.

Dr Elelu, who said that the state has now achieved 38 per cent coverage in COVID-19 vaccination out of the 70 per cent target, appealed to people to make themselves available for COVID-19 vaccination for the first shot, second shot or booster shot as the case may be during the exercise.

“Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq in 2021 launched COVID-19 vaccination exercise upon discovery of highly efficacious covid-19 vaccines. However, one would be surprised that alongside the established efficacy of some of those vaccines, we still have problems of hesitancy. In the first year of COVID-19, we had lots of hesitancy in terms of people hesitating to take the vaccines. It was a huge challenge. It slowed down the rate at which we wanted to cover and break the transmission of the covid-19 in the state.

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“What we did was to launch another campaign strategy which was the scale 2.0 meant to ramp up that coverage. It employed both the mass vaccination campaign mode and fixed post-campaign mode.

“As of January, we’re less than 20 per cent in our coverage of about 70 per cent. But as of today, we’re 38 per cent in terms of our coverage. We’ve consistently been in the top six states in the country. We’re not happy with the way we are still despite that we’re on the first quarter of the country. What we want to achieve is that 70 per cent of people in Kwara state are fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

“So, what we are now doing is to deploy 592 teams of about 3,000 personnel, out of which 119 of those teams are going to be outreach teams in order to reach every hard-to-reach area in the state, as well as every eligible person in the state. They’ll move from house to house, place to place like that,” she said.

Dr Elelu, who charged the people to accord members of the teams’ necessary support, said that each team would be made up of six members, namely two trained health workers, two health recorders, and town announcers.

Also speaking, the World Health Organization (WHO) representative in the state, Saliu Abdulahi, said that the SCALES 3.0 Covid-19 vaccination campaign was aimed to improve the vaccination campaign in the 16 local government areas of the state, calling on the people to come out for the exercise.

He said though the state had gained some mileage in the coverage, adding that there is a need for improvement as being done in the current exercise.

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