A flight carrying 600,000 doses of the AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine has arrived in Ghana as part of a global effort to immunise the world’s poorest people.
The delivery comes eight months after the launch of the COVAX initiative – the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) sharing scheme which is aimed at ensuring global vaccine equity.
The shots will be used to kick-start a vaccination drive that will prioritise frontline health workers and others at high risk, according to a plan presented by Ghanaian health officials.
“This is a momentous occasion, as the arrival of the COVID-19 vaccines into Ghana is critical in bringing the pandemic to an end,” Anne-Claire Dufay of UNICEF Ghana, and WHO country representative, Francis Kasolo, said in a statement.
“These 600,000 COVAX vaccines are part of an initial tranche of deliveries.”
They added the shots paid for by the scheme and produced by the Serum Institute of India will “represent part of the first wave of COVID vaccines headed to several low and middle-income countries”.