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Cross River administers COVID-19 vaccine on 1.5m people

By Tina Agosi Todo, Calabar
14 December 2022   |   3:55 am
Cross River State government has disclosed that over 1.5 million people have received COVID-19 vaccination so far.

DG of Cross River Primary Healthcare Development Agency (CRSPHCDA), Dr. Janet Ekpenyong

Cross River State government has disclosed that over 1.5 million people have received COVID-19 vaccination so far.

Director General of Cross River State Primary Healthcare and Development Agency (CRSPHCDA), Dr. Janet Ekpenyong, disclosed this, yesterday, in Calabar during the flag-off of COVID-19 vaccination by Community Pharmacies and Private Hospitals, organised in partnership with USAID Medicines, Technologies and Pharmaceutical Services (MTaPS) Programme.

She said the activity was in line with Federal Government’s policy of including private health facilities and community pharmacies in administering the COVID-19 vaccination, and the plan to hit the targeted population of 2.5 million in Cross River.

While expressing hope of achieving the target, the DG said the mortality rate caused by COVID-19 has drastically reduced in the state.

“ If we must hit our target population and ensure we vaccinate as many as 2.5 million that we are targeting as a state, then we must approach things differently.”

“I am proud to say we have vaccinated over 1.5 million people so far and we are hoping to achieve our target. It is our collective responsibility to make sure we can protect every Cross Riverian from dying from COVID. I’m glad we are getting there and the mortality rate as a result of COVID-19 has really reduced and we really want to make sure we go all out and cover the targeted population.”

She said that with support from USAID, the state would implement health policies that would propel government to ensure everyone has access to quality healthcare services available.

“This COVID-19 vaccine is free of charge and we do not expect that these pharmacies and private health facilities to make people to pay for it, it is totally free. I use this opportunity to encourage Cross Riverians, this services are available at your convenience.”

Speaking earlier, the Senior Technical Adviser, MTaPS, Mr. Lawrence Wakdet, said that towards attaining the 70 per cent coverage, USAID MTaPS was partnering with community pharmacies and private health facilities in six states, including Cross River, to administer the Johnson and Johnson COVID-19 vaccine to citizens.

“Like we all know, we need to attain up to 70 per cent coverage, that is when everybody will be safe. The private sector is trying to help the effort of the Cross River State Primary Healthcare to ensure they hit the target.”

Also in his remarks, the Permanent Secretary, Cross River State Ministry of Health, Dr. Iwara Iwara, said the ministry was working to ensure that the state vaccinate 2.5 million.

He commended Federal Government and partners for bringing in private health sector to participate in the exercise.