Coronavirus – Kenya: Another 410,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses arrive in Kenya, donated by the UK

This afternoon, 410,000 doses of the AstraZeneca-Oxford COVID-19 vaccine arrived at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi. The vaccines were donated by the UK government and transported by UNICEF. This is followed by a further donation of 407,000 cans from the UK via the COVAX facility. The flight was conducted at the airport by senior Kenyan government officials under the direction of Dr. Mercy Mwangangi, Chief Administrative Secretary of the Department of Health, British Deputy High Commissioner Josephine Gauld, UNICEF Chief Health Officer Yaron Wolman and WHO Representative in Kenya, Dr. Rudi Eggers, received.

“The Kenyan government is very grateful to the UK for this generous donation, which will support the further roll-out of our national COVID-19 immunization program,” said CAS Mercy Mwangangi. “This comes at a critical time as we are introducing the second dose of vaccine. It will ensure that our health workers, teachers and other key employees are protected and that hospitals and health centers across Kenya can continue to provide basic care to those affected by COVID-19. “

“Our health partnership with Kenya is 30 years old and is getting stronger every month. We are excited to support the launch of immunization in Kenya with this donation of 817,000 COVID-19 vaccines to save lives in Kenya, ”said UK Deputy High Commissioner Josephine Gauld. “This donation is just the latest in our incredibly strong partnership on COVID-19 and our strategic partnership with Kenya. From COVID-19 vaccines and genome sequencing to sharing cancer research and treatment to help Kenya treat more cancer patients at home, the UK has a long and proud history of supporting the Kenyan health sector. “

The launch of the national vaccination campaign is being led by the Ministry of Health with the support of WHO, UNICEF, Gavi and other partners. The Kenyan government is currently prioritizing the second dose for health workers, teachers, other key workers, and those over the age of 58. In addition to the procurement and transport of vaccines, UNICEF supports the distribution of the vaccines and the management of the cold chain capacity of the vaccines and, in collaboration with the WHO, supports the Ministry of Health in the areas of planning, technical support, capacity building, risk communication and community engagement.

“UNICEF is pleased to once again support the Kenyan government in the transport and distribution of these vital COVID-19 vaccines,” said UNICEF Health Director Dr. Yaron Wolman. “We know vaccines save lives, keep health and other vital services running, and aid economic recovery. In a global pandemic where new and more dangerous variants are emerging, nobody is safe until everyone is safe. For this reason, vaccine equity is essential if we are to have a level playing field and ensure that everyone at risk of COVID-19 is vaccinated regardless of where they live. “

The World Health Organization, meanwhile, urged the public to maintain public health measures while the national vaccination campaign continues.

“Thanks to this donation from the UK, frontline workers in Kenya who have not yet received their second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine have another opportunity to do so,” said Dr. Rudi Eggers, WHO representative in Kenya. “I can assure health workers and the Kenyan public that these vaccines are safe and effective. With vaccination, we will come much closer to ending this pandemic, so we urge all target groups to get vaccinated. In the meantime, we also urge everyone to continue with public health measures – wearing masks, regular hand washing, social distancing – and avoiding crowded rooms and gatherings.

Distributed by the APO group on behalf of the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).

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July 31, 2021 at 3:14 pm GMT

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