Abyei health workers to undergo training on Covid-19 vaccine administration

South Sudanese officials receive Covid-19 vaccines on 25 March 2021, photo: Radio Tamazuj

Health workers in Abyei Administrative Area will be trained on administration of Covid-19 vaccine before vaccination begins in the area. The Acting Head of Health Administration, Nyanwut Miyen says registration of the health workers who will attend the said training has started.

The health official says the team will be sent to Kuajok in Warrap state without giving further details about the training. This suggests that administering Covid-19 vaccine in Abyei Administrative Area may delay. Abyei Administrative Area has 198 confirmed cases of Covid-19 including 10 deaths.

In a related development, the minister of health in South Sudan, Hon. Elizabeth Achuei is encouraging people to get vaccinated against the coronavirus. The minister was speaking after receiving her first dose of AstraZeneca vaccine during Covid-19 vaccine roll out which started with frontline health workers at Juba Teaching Hospital on Tuesday. Hon. Achuei was the first person to get vaccinated against Covid-19 in South Sudan.

“I feel happy, very happy that at least I have done this,” she told reporters.

Achuei stated that, “There is nothing for them to be scared of,” alluding to those who are hesitant to take the vaccines.

The country received the first batch of 132,000 doses of AstraZeneca vaccines on 25 March. They were part of the 2.4 million doses South Sudan requested from COVID-19 Vaccines Global Access, known as COVAX.

The Ministry of Health had earlier announced it would start vaccination against the contagious Covid-19 within the Presidency. However, no one within the national government seemed interested to be the first beneficiary of the vaccine, Eye Radio report says. South Sudan, as of Tuesday, had 10,281 cases including 113 deaths.

Blood clots after taking AstraZeneca vaccine shot has been recorded in some countries in Europe, sparking concerns over safety of the vaccine. Seven people have died from unusual blood clots after getting the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine in the UK, BBC reports published four days ago shows. It is still not clear if the rare blood clots were just a coincidence or a genuine side effect of the vaccine.

The Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency says the benefits continue to outweigh any risk, according to the BBC news. MHPRA is an executive agency of the Department of Health and Social Care in the United Kingdom responsible for ensuring that medicines and medical devices work and are acceptably safe.

The World Health Organization (WHO) and the European Medicines Agency have echoed this conclusion. A spokeswoman for AstraZeneca said:

“Patient safety remains the company’s highest priority.”