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MoH targets 150K daily vaccinations in mass drive

At least 1.5 million Kenyans will have received their jab by end of 10-day exercise

In Summary

•The ministry will also enhance the awareness campaign to ensure Kenyans understand the importance of being vaccinated.

•This will include dispensing any myths and misconceptions that Kenyans hold against the vaccines.

Kenya receives 907,200 doses of Johnson and Johnson vaccine, a donation from MasterCard foundation and 7.5 million special syringes meant for the administration of Pfizer vaccine at JKIA on November 24, 2021
Kenya receives 907,200 doses of Johnson and Johnson vaccine, a donation from MasterCard foundation and 7.5 million special syringes meant for the administration of Pfizer vaccine at JKIA on November 24, 2021

Kenya now targets at least 150,000 Covid-19 vaccinations per day for the next 10 days in a mass inoculation drive expected to start on Friday.

This means at the end of the drive, at least 1.5 million Kenyans will have received their jab as the government gains momentum towards attaining the 10 million target.

During this period, the ministry in collaboration with other partners aims to ensure that vaccines are available to people and it will involve going to markets, bus stages, churches and other areas that attract huge gatherings.

The ministry will also enhance the awareness campaign to ensure Kenyans understand the importance of being vaccinated.

This will include dispensing any myths and misconceptions that Kenyans hold against the vaccines.

“In the 10 days period, we will utilize more vaccination posts in very close collaboration with the counties. We will go to the villages and counties will be on the forefront so it will be a partnership,” Vaccines deployment task force chair Willis Akhwale said.

Kenya receives 907,200 doses of Johnson and Johnson vaccine, a donation from MasterCard foundation and 7.5 million special syringes meant for the administration of Pfizer vaccine at JKIA on November 24, 2021
Kenya receives 907,200 doses of Johnson and Johnson vaccine, a donation from MasterCard foundation and 7.5 million special syringes meant for the administration of Pfizer vaccine at JKIA on November 24, 2021

“It will be very similar to when you hear of measles campaign, the only thing is that we are using injections unlike polio administered through the mouth.”

The vaccines supply has continued to improve with the country now having received 11.6 million after another 907,200 doses of Johnson and Johnson arrived in the country on Wednesday.

To date, a total of 6,597,597 vaccines have so far been administered across the country with 4,087,317 people partially vaccinated and 2,510,280 fully vaccinated.

The proportion of the adult population fully vaccinated stands at nine per cent.

On Sunday, the Heath CS Mutahi Kagwe gave unvaccinated Kenyans until December 21 to ensure they get the jab to be able to receive in-person government services.

In a raft of measures announced by the National Emergency Response Committee, the services will include KRA services, education, immigration, hospital, prison visitations, NTSA and port services among others.

The ministry said Kenyans will be required to provide proof of full vaccination when seeking transport services including the use of domestic flights, the SGR, boarding matatus and buses and all regional transport means, visiting parks and hotels among others.

“Nobody said it is mandatory, if you don’t want services in the Ministry of Health don’t come. Nobody is saying that you must be vaccinated, absolutely not,” the CS said.

The government also received another consignment of 7.5 million specialized Pfizer syringes before the arrival of the expected four million vaccines.

Edited by Kiilu Damaris

Kenya receives 907,200 doses of Johnson and Johnson vaccine, a donation from MasterCard foundation and 7.5 million special syringes meant for the administration of Pfizer vaccine at JKIA on November 24, 2021
Kenya receives 907,200 doses of Johnson and Johnson vaccine, a donation from MasterCard foundation and 7.5 million special syringes meant for the administration of Pfizer vaccine at JKIA on November 24, 2021

“As you know Pfizer requires specialized syringes for administration and we are expecting almost four million doses of Pfizer to come in so in readiness to that this afternoon we have received 7.5 million syringes to enable us quickly administer the Pfizer doses,” Akhwale noted.

In the new strategy, the government plans to employ the services of at least 10,000 vaccinators who will be required to move from door to door just as has been the case with polio and measles vaccines to administer the jabs.

This is expected to start from November 26 and run all the way to December 5 according to the head of Division Preventive and Promotive health at the ministry Andrew Mulwa.

This was after it emerged that the community outreaches that have been going on across the country have not yielded much fruits.

According to the ministry, the rural communities have been more disadvantaged as the outreach centres are located tens of kilometers hence hindering those who would otherwise wish to take the jab from accessing them.

“We are also reviewing the gaps that exist in terms of fields of outreaches because we have had many outreaches that have not yielded the numbers that we require. There are still myths and misconceptions that are going round about these vaccines which we have to demystify,” Mulwa said.