With over a year into the global coronavirus pandemic, the invention of the vaccine has been one of the few gleams of hope the world’s population has got. Vaccination is already underway in several most developed countries, and vaccination in Nigeria is scheduled to start soon. Here is everything you need to know about it.
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1. When is Nigeria getting the vaccine?
The first batch of the COVID-19 vaccine is expected to be delivered to Nigeria early this month. This first batch is expected to contain 100,000 doses to cover the needs of Nigerians who need the vaccine the most. After that, the delivery of the vaccine will be scheduled around all year. Vaccinations, in turn, will begin at the end of winter or, more likely, at the beginning of March. 40% of the Nigerian population is expected to get vaccinated this year, with 70% of the population expected to be immunised by the end of 2022.
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2. Which vaccine is Nigeria getting?
The first vaccine against COVID-19 Nigeria is getting is the one produced by Pfizer and BioNTech. According to the Nigerian government, they are also negotiating with other countries and vaccine manufacturers with plans to buy other vaccines. Specifically, vaccines from Moderna, as well as Russian and Chinese vaccines, may also be imported in Nigeria later this year.
3. How effective is the Pfizer vaccine?
There hasn’t been a lot of time to investigate the Pfizer vaccine and its efficiency, but the early reports are very uplifting. The vaccine is roughly 52% effective after the first dose, and two doses are 95% effective in preventing the coronavirus, according to the clinical trials. The two doses of the Pfizer vaccine need to be injected 21 days apart and there are some potential side effects, such as tiredness, headache, and swelling in the area of the shot, which are expected to go away in a few days.
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4. How much does the vaccine cost?
To the patients who will receive the COVID-19 shots, the vaccine doesn’t cost anything. It will be paid for by the Nigerian government, who has already spent over 10 billion naira on purchasing the vaccine through several initiatives, most importantly, the COVAX program.
5. Who will be vaccinated first?
The vaccination against COVID-19 in Nigeria hasn’t started yet, but there is already a list of groups of people who will be the first one to get the shot. The first batch of the coronavirus vaccine will be distributed among the following groups:
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- Health workers fighting the coronavirus on the frontlines – hospitals, treatment centres, and isolation facilities;
- Other frontline workers, such as airport employees or immigration officers;
- Employees of laboratories testing for COVID-19;
- Strategic leaders directing the country’s response to the coronavirus;
- People older than 50 who have an increased risk of complications if they get infected;
- People under 50 but with serious underlying conditions that can be made worse by COVID-19;
- Some police officers and customs officers.
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