Ghana approves Moderna, Pfizer as Zimbabwe approves Johnson&johnson COVID-19 vaccine

GHANA – Ghana’s Foods and Drugs Authority (FDA) has approved the importation and use of Moderna Spikevax and Pfizer-BioNTech’s coronavirus vaccines in the country.

The approval of these two now brings the number of approved vaccines in Ghana to five, all in a bid to protect citizens from the pandemic.

The FDA continues to use the emergency authorization pathway, which is the accepted procedure for all national regulatory authorities globally, to ensure timely access to quality and safe medical products including vaccines during this pandemic,” said the release by FDA.

Data by the Africa Centers for Disease Control (CDC) indicate that Ghana has so far reported 103,019 COVID-19 cases, 97,213 recoveries and 823 fatalities.

The country has managed to administer over 1.27 vaccine doses, with at least 1.3% of the population fully immunized.

This comes just shortly after Zimbambwe cleared emergency use authorization for J&J vaccine. So far, the Zimbabwe Medicines Control Authority (MCAZ) had only registered vaccines from India, Russia and China.

Yesterday, Zimbabwe received a batch of Sinopharm vaccines from China, as another shipment is expected today.

Zimbabwe has to date received several batches of Sinopharm and Sinovac vaccines from China in addition to receiving small quantities of Russia’s Sputnik V and India’s Covaxin vaccines.

The latest deliveries come at a time when the country is scaling up its vaccination program in the wake of the third wave of infections.

More than 1.5 million people in Zimbabwe have received their first shot, and nearly 700,000 have received their second dose since the vaccination program started in February.

The country is targeting to inoculate at least 10 million of its approximately 15 million citizens by year-end to achieve herd immunity.

Since the first case of COVID-19 was reported in March last year, Zimbabwe has recorded 101,711 cases and 3,280 deaths.

The number of vaccines trickling into the continent has been on a steady rise for the second week now. These will assist Africa, which has so far reported over 6.5 million cases and 166,528 fatalities, protects its people against the pandemic.

Most countries in Africa have been dealing with the third wave of the pandemic. Currently, several warnings have been sent out against a fourth wave in some countries, largely due to the highly transmissible Delta variant.

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