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Govt increases Covid-19 vaccination sites

Dr Mangwiro

Rumbidzayi Zinyuke

Health Reporter

THE Government has introduced more Covid-19 vaccination sites across the country as part of efforts to decentralise the process and decongest existing service points.

Wilkins Hospital, which has been the main vaccination point in Harare, was last week overburdened by the increasing number of people coming for their jabs.

As a result, vaccination sites have been increased to 24 as part of efforts to ensure every citizen has access to the vaccines.

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The new centres, which started operating on April 2 include Parirenyatwa Hospital, Mbare Polyclinic, Sunningdale Satellite Clinic, Highfield Polyclinic, Southerton Satellite Clinic, Mufakose, Kuwadzana, Warren Park and Kambuzuma polyclinics.

People can also get their vaccines at Mabelreign, Marlborough, Avondale, Belvedere, Mt Pleasant, Hatcliffe, Borrowdale, Highlands, Mabvuku, Greendale and Eastlea clinics as well as Sally Mugabe Central Hospital, among others.

The decentralisation of vaccination sites will ensure that citizens get their vaccines at a centre nearest to them.

Deputy Minister of Health and Child Care Dr John Mangwiro said the Government realised that the numbers of people coming to get vaccinated was increasing and this was causing congestion at Wilkins necessitating the establishment of more service points.

He said the same would be done at all vaccination centres including in the rural areas where sites situated in clinics would be complimented by others at business centres and growth points.

“What we will do further is to increase the number of outlets so that we reach our target figures quickly. We will have fixed outlets so if there is a clinic, we might have another outlet at shopping centres to make sure that people get their vaccines and we avoid long queues,” he said.

The number of people who have received the vaccine has been rising over the past two weeks to reach 76 995 last Wednesday. 

The number of those who have received their second dose has also increased to 14 885.

Vaccination uptake has also increased in other cities with border towns registering a significant increase in numbers.

In Matabeleland South, the uptake of the Covid-19 vaccine has peaked under Phase Two with more people now keen to get immunised.

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Provincial nursing officer Sister Joyce Dube said they had completed vaccinating 5 000 frontline workers under phase one. “We are now busy vaccinating people under Phase Two and the response is encouraging. We are equal to the task,” she said.

Sister Dube said so far, they had received doses to cover 18 000 people under the second phase of immunisation.

All the necessary logistics had been put in place to accommodate all those seeking immunisation including customs clearing agents in Beitbridge, Plumtree, Mpoengs, Miatengwe and Mlambapele.

Government has so far brought in 1,2 million doses of the Sinovac vaccine purchased from China to boost the donations of 400 000 Sinopharm vaccines received from China and 35 000 Covaxin from the Government of India.

Treasury has already made payment for more vaccines, which are expected to arrive in the country soon.

About US$100 million was set aside for the procurement of vaccines targeting 60 percent of the total population as the country fights to achieve herd immunity.

HERALD