Enugu State Government said it has opened additional COVID-19 vaccination centres in major markets, malls and public places in the state.

This is in addition to the more than 100 conventional vaccination centres previously opened in the state.

George Ugwu, the executive secretary, Enugu State Primary Health Care Development Agency (ENS-PHCDA) told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Enugu on Saturday that the move was to make COVID-19 vaccination centres more accessible for residents.

Mr Ugwu said that having more vaccination centres would help the state to achieve its target of getting every eligible resident vaccinated against the pandemic.

According to him, centres have been opened in major markets like Ogbette Market and Kenyatta Market in Enugu, Shoprite and SPAR malls, as well as other designated public places, notwithstanding the 100 vaccination centres already available.

“Another thing we will do differently this time, which came as a result of challenges in the first phase, is that of increased advocacy and public sensitisation.

“We have planned to officially communicate and use various grassroots leaders, traditional, religious and opinion leaders to press home the message of the need for the vaccination, its safety and efficacy.

“We are desirous to go to the hinterland and check all falsehoods and unfounded information militating against the people to freely get vaccinated, especially in the rural areas.

“Our teams will be visiting worship centres, community meetings and other public gatherings to sensitise our people on the need to receive their COVID-19 vaccination for the protection of all,” he said.

The executive secretary said the agency had created special mobile vaccination teams that would cover groups that needed to be vaccinated.

“We are ready to make the sacrifice and send our special mobile vaccination teams to groups such as military and Para-military organisations among others to ensure reach and accessibility for them,” he said.

Mr Ugwu lauded the state government for being supportive in all programmes on COVID-19 vaccination, especially in the installation and maintenance of cold chain equipment, accessories and logistics to ensure 24-hour power supply.

He called on all eligible citizens and residents of Enugu State (18 years and above) to get vaccinated.

“COVID-19 vaccines are safe, secure and meant to protect everyone,” he stressed.

Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi flagged off COVID-19 second batch vaccination at the Enugu State University Teaching Hospital, Enugu, on August 26.

The state has received 5,012 doses of Modena vaccine and additional 13,416 doses of AstraZeneca vaccines. It is expecting an additional 60,000 doses of Modena vaccine.

A total of 1,200 health workers have been specially trained to vaccinate people in the second phase of the exercise.

NAN recalled that Enugu State had already exhausted the 65,410 doses of AstraZeneca vaccines supplied by the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency in March, 2021.

(NAN)

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