Following the expiration of one million doses of COVID-19 vaccines in Nigeria, the Canadian High Commissioner, Amb Jamie Christoff has donated 2.6 million doses of Johnson Johnson COVID-19 vaccines to Nigeria.
Dr Faisal Shuaib, the Executive Director of, the National Primary Health Care Development Agency, (NPHCDA), said that the vaccines were now promptly shipped and distributed through the COVAX and AVAT facilities to reduce the risk of expiration.
Shuaib said this in Abuja at the official handover of about 2.6 million doses of Johnson Johnson COVID-19 vaccines.
The Presidential Steering Committee (PSC) on COVID-19 also announced that the country would no longer accept vaccines with a short shelf life as such vaccines mounted undue pressure on health workers to administer them.
It also took the decision to destroy one million such vaccines publicly, to assure Nigerians that there was no intention to use them.
Shuaib said that donors now recognised the need to give away vaccines before their expiration dates.
“There is now better coordination, and the COVID-19 vaccines in the country are not expired nor have short shelf lives.
“The Federal Government, through the NPHCDA and other partners, has continued to ensure that the country received vaccines with a long expiration date,” he said.
He said that 62 million vaccine doses were available in the country at the moment, adding that 40 million more were being expected.
While commending the Government of Canada for providing “the much-needed support”, Shuaib said that the donation was critical to helping the country ramp up its vaccination rollout process.
“Johnson & Johnson offers a single-dose opportunity for full vaccination, which means if you take one dose of the vaccine, you are regarded as a fully vaccinated person.
“However, we strongly recommend a booster dose after 2 months of taking the initial dose to strengthen your level of immunity against COVID-19.
“A second dose of the vaccine serves as the booster dose,” he said.
According to him, “we are in a full campaign mode in which COVID-19 vaccines are ready-made available in the health facilities and other designated places.
“They are also brought by our vaccination teams to your doorsteps. We are leveraging our polio eradication experience to fight COVID-19.
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