Panafrican News Agency

Coronavirus: Gambia to embark on countrywide vaccination campaign

Banjul, Gambia (PANA) - Gambia's ministry of Health, in collaboration with its partners, has announced a countrywide coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccination campaign starting 9 May and ending on 15 May 2022.

The campaign is in fulfilment of the WHO global vision of scaling the vaccination coverage in all countries to 40 per cent by the end of this year and in line with its commitment to the African Union target of vaccinating 60 per cent of the continent’s population by end of June 2022,

A statement signed by Modou Njai, Director of Health Promotion and Education, and made available to PANA Thursday stated that this mass immunization will take the form of setting up and distributing vaccination sites in all communities based on the size of settlements.

“Vaccination teams with social mobilizers will be deployed to each site. The teams will be deployed to public places such as community “bantabas” (junction), health facilities, schools, markets, crossing points, and any other strategic locations in the communities,” the statement said.

It added:  “Currently, the country has three different types of vaccines namely: Johnson & Johnson, Pfizer, and Sinopharm all of which are safe and effective in preventing severe COVID-19 infection, hospitalization, and death.”

The goal of this vaccination campaign is to vaccinate everybody, young and old people including children aged 12 years and above. It will target eligible populations through vaccination and registration in each outlet.

According  to the statement, during the campaign, vaccination cards will be issued to any person that gets the jab, saying  that  the card will serve as a vaccine passport, especially for people travelling to counties requiring proof of valid COVID-19 vaccine, and urged the public to keep the vaccination card safe.

“Despite significant gains in the reduction of cases of COVID-19, the pandemic continues to be one of the biggest challenges in the last two years. Therefore, the Ministry of Health urges all to unite and overcome this devastating public health threat as no one is safe until we are all safe.

"This campaign is an opportunity to achieve a lifesaving dose of immunity against the dreadful disease if the required numbers of people are vaccinated within the stipulated period. In this regard, we call on all within the age category to get vaccinated during the campaign,” the statement said.

The statement also pointed out that the Ministry of Health was soliciting the continuous support and cooperation of the general public in its efforts to contain COVID-19.

 “The public is encouraged to call the Ministry’s Toll-Free Number 1025 for more or other related information regarding the vaccination campaign,” the statement noted.

-0- PANA MSS/RA 5May2022