One of the greatest challenges African states have had in combatting the COVID-19 pandemic these past weeks is vaccine safety concerns.
With the AstraZeneca vaccine believed to possibly have some negative side effects, many nations in Europe have suspended its use.
The case in Africa has however been different as Cameroon remains the lone country on the continent to outrightly express its skepticism and completely halt importation and use of the product.
Reacting to safety concerns over use of the AstraZeneca vaccine, Health Minister, Dr Manaouda Malachie said Cameroon was seeking expert advice and wouldnot in any way endanger the lives of its citizens.
“As the side effects of the AstraZeneca vaccine continue to be debated, I would like to make it clear that I have submitted the matter to the Scientific Council and NITAG for advice,” he tweeted.
“The expectation,” Dr Manaouda’s tweet continued, “is that we will not use this vaccine while there are still doubts about its effects”.
“Since co-morbidities and existing conditions are a factor in the complication of Covid-19, I would advise that you have your health checked, even minimally. I encourage hospitals to hold open-door days for this. I have just had my medical check-up in this regard,” he also recommended.
South Africa, it should be noted, also expressed skepticism and said it was pausing use of the vaccine due to studies that revealed the AstraZeneca vaccine offers reduced protection from the Covid-19 variant first identified there.
Mimi Mefo Info