Today in Mozambique, one of our core countries, the first COVID-19 vaccines arrived in Maputo. Health workers are first priority to receive the vaccines; but it still comes nearly 72 days after the first U.S. health workers received their shots.
President Nyusi proudly announced on his Facebook page:
“I would like to share with the Mozambican people arriving in the country this afternoon Wednesday, February 24th, the first batch of the vaccine. With the arrival of this lot, our challenge continues to ensure that other doses are coming, the negotiations are at an advanced stage with our partners.”
While the arrival of the vaccines is well overdue for everyone, the 200,000 doses will begin to cover health care workers over 50 years.
Now that the shipment is in the country, the preparations begin, including training vaccinators, as well as distributing the vaccines to provincial hospitals and health facilities at the district levels across the country. VillageReach will support the Mozambique Ministry of Health with the supply chain planning and logistics, but the vaccine campaign won’t start until mid-March. Health workers will have to leave their posts to reach the vaccine sites for their vaccinations.
If we still count the days from when the first U.S. health worker was jabbed, when all is said and done, this will be nearly 90 days later. You could say it is too little too late, but we are relieved to begin protecting health workers in Mozambique.