Mbabane: The kingdom of Eswatini on Thursday received its first batch of 20 000 doses of Oxford AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine manufactured by the Serum Institute of India.
The vaccine landed at the King Mswati III International (KMIII) Airport and was received by the Minister of Health Lizzie Nkosi.
The 20 000 doses of the Covid-19 vaccine that was received by the country was through the assistance of the Indian Government.
Receiving the vaccine at the Matsapha Central Medical Stores, the minister of health thanked the Indian government for the generous support that it has given to the country.
The minister of health also announce that the country was expecting an additional 12 000 doses of the OxFord AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine from the COVAX facility by this weekend. “The vaccine will be in addition to the 20 000 doses received this afternoon from the Republic of India”, she said.
Nkosi said vaccination priority will be given to all health care workers including community care givers. She said a majority of health workers have already registered for vaccination and the vaccination exercise is expected to begin next week. “The health workers will include community care givers and these will be followed by the elderly and those with co-morbidities, she said”
Nkosi highlited that frontline workers will then follow and then the rest of the Nation.
She then encourage EmaSwati to register for vaccination as this vaccine has proven to reduce incidents of acute illness and death, she said the ministry will also monitor those who have taken the vaccine.
“We have several teams that will be responsible for the vaccination exercise. One of them is the team from Israel; which will assist with logistics. We also have a team from Cuba that will assist with logistics as well as our own health workers, said the health minister.
India High Commissioner Rhada Venkataram making her remarks said the government of India will continue to support Eswatini in its fight against the pandemic as well as in achieving its development goals by raising the levels of engagements between the two friendly countries.
The vaccine come at a time when the kingdom of Eswatini has recorded a total of 17 215 cases, with 659 casualties and 15567 recoveries since the pandemic began.
the total number of cases show a decline since the eruption of the c=second wave of the pandemic as on Thursday March 11, 2021 the minister of health announced that out of a total of 533 results received only were positive.
The minister continued to urge the public to practice all precautions as advised by the ministry of health.