The permanent secretary ministry of health, Dr. Diana Atwiine has said that individuals in the public sector will receive free vaccination against COVID-19 disease.
“All vaccinations against covid in public sector will be free,” Dr. Diana Atwiine said.
Today, the ministry announced that the initial batch of 864,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccines will arrive on in the country on Friday 5th March, 2021.
According to minister Dr. Jane Ruth Aceng, vaccination against COVID-19 is scheduled to begin on March10.
Minister Aceng says the vaccination exercise based on phases and will begin with frontline health workers and security personnel.
“Phase 1 of the vaccination exercise will focus on: Health workers (Public, Private Not for Profit (PNFP) and Private for Profit (PFP)) estimated at 150,000; Security personnel (UPDF, Police, Prisons); estimated at 250,000” Minister Aceng said.
Minister further revealed that in Phases 2 and 3 of the COVID-19 vaccination program, the Ministry will roll out the vaccination program to age groups between 18 and 50 years in a staggered manner until 49.6% of the Ugandan population is vaccinated as will be guided by the local epidemiology of the disease.
Another category expected to benefit from this free vaccination exercise are; Teachers (Public and Private) among other essential social service providers; estimated at 550,000; Persons from the age 50 years and above, estimated at 3,348500 and Persons with underlying health conditions aged below 50 years, estimated at 500,000.
The exercise will be conducted at all government hospitals starting from hospitals at the level of Health Centre III and above.
Individuals without National Identification Numbers, Passport or any other documents to identify their nationalities as Ugandans according to Dr. Diana Atwiine may miss out on the vaccination exercise.
“Those with no NIN should endevour to get one because that is one mechanism we are ensuring that someone received the vaccine. It is accountability mechanism,” she cautioned.
She further advised that COVID-19 vaccine like any vaccine when received an individual may experience some mild symptoms appealing to them to stay at the vaccination centre for 30mins for monitoring.
The ministry reported that the vaccine will be received persons between the age of 18 and 50yrs constituting to 49.6% of the Uganda’s population contrary to the 60% which was earlier stated.
According to the ministry, this is done because the number of people estimated to receive the vaccine has declined as per World Health Organization and health experts recommendations on the age groups to be vaccinated.
Earlier, ministry had planned to start the vaccination from persons from the age of 16 years and above but WHO recommends for a minimum age of 18 years.