The Ugandan government has announced that up to 400,000 doses of the covid-19 vaccine donated for mass vaccination exercise in the Acholi sub-region of the country would be destroyed.
Earlier in November, the government secured over 500,000 doses of Moderna vaccines with the aim of meeting its target of vaccinating 22 million Ugandans above age 18. Unfortunately, only 100,000 doses of the vaccine were utilised leaving, 400,000 doses to go to waste, according to Health Minister, Jane Ruth Aceng.
“Moderna is ultra-frozen it has to be thawed. Before use, when it was unutilized in Acholi we took it to western Uganda but couldn’t utilise it before 30 days,” she said.
Nigeria also destroyed over a million expired doses of the AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine back in December 2021. The expired doses were destroyed at a landfill in Nigeria capital Abuja, a week after the country had announced it will no longer accept donated vaccines with short shelf lives.
Uganda’s health minister attributed the low rate of vaccination to vaccine hesitation caused majorly by misinformation and misconceptions about the effects of vaccines.
To boost vaccine storage, the government has received cold chain equipment worth $ 8.3 million to be dispatched for vaccine storage.