From Laide Raheem, Abeokuta
The Speaker of the Ogun State House of Assembly, Kunle Oluomo, other lawmakers and staff of the Assembly have received of Oxford/AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine.
The state government has also commenced the distribution of the vaccines to all the major Primary Healthcare Centres for the inoculation of residents.
The Speaker whose vaccination was administered by the Commissioner for Health, Tomi Coker, called on Ogun residents to take advantage of the inoculation exercise by making themselves available for it.
After taking his first jab, Oluomo described exercise as a very healthy medical intervention against the virus.
Other lawmakers and management staff of the State Assembly also received the vaccines at Governor’s office clinic, Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta.
The Speaker further advised all residents to shun any rumour about the vaccine and make themselves available for vaccination.
He commended the state government for its ingenuity and commitment towards flattening the COVID-19 pandemic curve in the state, noting that there was the need to educate and enlighten the people on the health benefits of the vaccine.
On the distribution of the vaccines across the primary health centres, the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Kunle Somorin, in statement, on Thursday, said the need to ensure even, equitable and unhindered access to the vaccine informed the decision to take the vaccines to all the PHCs.
The statement noted that all the nurses and other community healthcare workers are being trained in the administration of the vaccines.
The training, Somorin added, is in compliance with the directives of the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency to ensure that nothing goes wrong.
He disclosed that the state has been training and retraining frontline healthcare workers and community healthcare givers since the outbreak of the pandemic in February, 2020.
“Our PHCs are ready and no stone will be left unturned to ensure that every Ogun resident is inoculated against the dreaded virus, even as we intensify sensitisation on the need to keep all the guidelines and protocols, like the the use of face masks, social distancing and regular washing of hands with soap and water and sanitisers at regular intervals, among others.
“The government is determined to ensure that all residents across the state have access to the vaccine in line with the guidelines of the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA). More doses of the vaccines are going to be made available beyond the first tranche that was given by the World Health Organization and the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19”, the CPS to the governor submitted.
Meanwhile, Governor Abiodun has ordered that the front line workers who are mostly health workers be given priority in the administration of the vaccine.
Speaking at the State Hospital, Ijaiye, Abeokuta, after the commencement of the vaccination exercise of healthcare workers, on Thursday, the Commissioner for Health, Tomi Coker said all health workers in the state would be vaccinated.
“We have started vaccinating health care workers and other staff in the State. Those who received the first dose of AstraZeneca/Oxford COVID-19 Vaccine will be receiving another dose after three months.
“Ogun is the first in the country to receive the vaccines and we have started inoculating front line healthcare workers. We have identified the State Hospitals with cold chain facilities to store the vaccines”, Coker stated.
The Commissioner said as of Wednesday, Ogun State’s COVID-19 case tally stood at over 4,495 including at least 48 deaths and more than 4,184 recoveries, adding more vaccines would be delivered to the state when another batch of the 16 million doses of AstraZeneca/Oxford COVID-19 vaccine procured by the Federal Government arrive the country.
The Permanent Secretary, Hospitals Management Board, Nafiu Aigoro described the vaccines as very safe, adding that healthcare workers and members of the public should avail themselves of the opportunity to be vaccinated.
The Chief Medical Director of State Hospital Ijaye, Kayode Oladenide after receiving the vaccine said, ”2020 had been a dreadful year but life would get back to normal in the coming months. Now it is easier to be more efficient in caring for our patients, having received the vaccine”.