ABUJA, NIGERIA (AP) – Africa’s top health official is launching a campaign to enlist young people to encourage vaccinations, as just 11.3 per cent of the continent’s 1.3 billion people are vaccinated against COVID-19.
Youth will be encouraged “to play an active role” in ramping up inoculations across the continent where the vaccination rate is far below other regions in the world, Africa Centers for Disease Contro (CDC) and Prevention Director John Nkengasong said on Thursday.
Africa so far has 10.8 million confirmed infections and 240,000 deaths and vaccination efforts have been accelerating as vaccines doses are “becoming readily available” on the continent, Nkengasong said.
In the last four weeks, Africa has seen an average 10 per cent decrease in new cases, he said.
Of the 597 million doses of vaccines that Africa has so far received, 64 per cent have been administered, he said.
The campaign tagged “African Youths for COVID-19 vaccination: Initiative for Saving Lives, Saving Livelihoods” “will be an important initiative” as the median age of Africa’s population at 19.5 years, Nkengasong said.