First COVID-19 vaccines arrive in Djibouti
Djibouti is the second country in the Middle East and North Africa to receive COVID-19 vaccines through the COVAX facility.
- The first batch of vaccines will help vaccinate healthcare workers, people over the age of 50, and people with comorbidities – the presence of two or more diseases.
- The country has 6,102 people who have been positively diagnosed with COVID-19 with 63 deaths from infection with this virus.
- Vaccines were delivered through COVAX, a coalition jointly led by the World Health Organization (WHO), Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) with the support of UNICEF.
Djibouti is the second Middle East and North Africa (MENA) country to receive vaccines against COVID-19 after an initial shipment of the AstraZeneca / Serum Institute of India (SII) vaccine arrived at Djibouti International Airport. The vaccines were delivered through COVAX, a coalition led by the World Health Organization (WHO), Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), with support from UNICEF, promoting a fair and equitable distribution of COVID-19 ensures vaccines for countries regardless of their income.
Delivery will be made upon the arrival of a quantity of syringes that are part of a Gavi-funded and supported global inventory that UNICEF delivered on behalf of the COVAX facility last Saturday, February 27, 2021. WHO has worked with national authorities to establish a vaccination strategy that includes training vaccines, ensuring vaccine safety and monitoring for adverse effects.
This first shipment of vaccines will support the vaccination of health care workers, people over the age of 50, and people with comorbidities.
Through this contribution and Djibouti’s commitment to continue its efforts to contain and end the pandemic, the country seeks to ensure continuity of facilities and access to essential services.
HE Mohamed Warsama Dirieh, Djibouti’s Health Minister, praised the work of all partners in making it possible for Djibouti to obtain vaccines against COVID-19 through the COVAX facility.
“The vaccines are a vital part of controlling the spread of the virus and our eventual return to normal,” said HE Mohamed Warsama Dirieh. He urged those entitled to register and get vaccinated as soon as possible.
Worldwide, Djibouti was able to contain the spread of the virus in the country through preventive measures. The country has 6,102 people who have been positively diagnosed with COVID-19, with 63 deaths from infection with this virus, since the first case occurred in Djibouti on March 18, 2020.
“Today is a new phase against COVID-19 in Djibouti, thanks to the COVAX facility, the contribution of GAVI and the commitment of the Djiboutian authorities. We and all partners are impatient to start vaccinating the eligible persons to ensure maximum protection of the population and to put an end to this pandemic and return to normal life, “said Melva Johnson, UNICEF representative in Djibouti.
“The arrival of these vaccines marks a new phase in the ongoing response to COVID-19 in Djibouti. The more people vaccinated, the more effective the vaccines will be in slowing the spread of the virus, lowering infection rates and protecting society as a whole. However, we should always remember that vaccinations only work when combined with all other public health strategies, ”said Dr. Mondher Letaief, WHO representative in Djibouti.
“It’s not exciting to know that COVAX vaccines are ending up in Djibouti. Many thanks to all Djibouti and partners who have worked without failure to reach this first milestone. This is just the beginning; We will deliver vaccines to everyone in need, ”said Ricard Lacort, GAVI’s Senior Country Manager for Afghanistan and Djibouti.
With support from Gavi, WHO and UNICEF will work with the government of Djibouti to launch and implement the national vaccination campaign to reach all eligible people with vaccines.
COVAX is committed to ensuring that all countries participating in the Facility (currently 190 including Djibouti) have fair access to at least 2 billion doses of the COVID-19 vaccine by the end of 2021. The additional shipments of the vaccines for Djibouti are expected to arrive in the second quarter of 2021.
The first country in the Middle East to receive vaccines was Sudan.