*Flooding affecting our vaccination efforts,says NPHCDA boss, Faisal

By Joseph Erunke

ABUJA-THE United Parcel Service,UPS, Foundation, Wednesday,donated
22 portable ultra-low temperature freezers to Nigeria,as part of its efforts in assisting the country to stop the spread of COVID-19.

The ultra-low temperature freezers are to be deployed to the hard-to-reach areas in some parts of the country.

Speaking while receiving the consignment on behalf of the federal government,the Executive Director, National Primary Health Care Development Agency, NPHCDA,Dr. Faisal Shuaib, disclosed that recent flooding across the country affected the vaccination efforts of his agency.

He,however,said measures have been taken to continue with both COVID-19 and routine vaccination in the effected areas.

“The flood has displaced a lot of Nigerians and what we have done is to recalibrate the positions of Nigerians. We know that a lot of the people who live in communities that have now been overtaken by flood are now internally displaced persons and have now moved to IDPs camps ,and so we have now recalibrated and trying to reach to these individuals with vaccines,”he said.

Dr Shuaib thanked the United Parcel Service Foundation for the gesture, assuring that the equipment would be used for the purpose they were meant for.

According to him,” This donation is timely and relevant to our need for energy-efficient cold chain systems for vaccine storage in Nigeria. “

Recalling that “the century-aged global shipping and logistic company started in Nigeria in 1994,almost two decades ago”,he noted that:” Today’s event is therefore a reflection of true friendship that was built and will continue to rest on trust and mutual confidence.”

He used the occasion to disclose that as at Wednesday, October 19,2022, Nigeria has vaccinated 53.5 percent of its eligible population against COVID-19.

Hear him:”Let me use this opportunity to inform you that as of today, 13th October 2022, 56,594,138 (representing 50.6%) of our 111,776,503 eligible population have been vaccinated against COVID-19 in Nigeria. Making this remarkable progress amidst persistent disinformation and low risk perception has been possible because of the significant support we have received from our development partners, including United Parcel Services (UPS).

“We cherish our partnership with UPS and will continue to work with all stakeholders to ensure that Nigeria meets its target of vaccinating half of its overall population against COVID-19. As our country moves rapidly towards herd immunity, It is my firm belief that no country in the world is safe from COVID-19, and no business entity is safe from its adversities until all of us are safe.

“May I at this point remind everyone that our SCALES 3.0 campaign strategy offers a unique opportunity for childhood vaccination and other PHC services for beneficiaries concurrently with COVID-19 vaccination. We therefore urge parents to take their eligible children for vaccination against polio, yellow fever, measles and other vaccine preventable childhood diseases in the same locations where the adults also receive COVID-19 vaccines. Our mobile teams are also in possession of all these vaccines when they visit your homes. Please welcome them and present yourselves and your eligible children for vaccination as may be applicable.”

Earlier,the Head, UPS Foundation Africa, Bassey Anari,said his company has done a lot for the country as part of its contributions to help Nigeria fight against the spread of COVID-19.

“Ups has done a lot and has so far delivered about 21 million doses of vaccines across the country. A strong supply chain is very critical to medical, pharmaceutical and other aspects of health. It is one thing for you to produce and another thing for you to move it to those that need it and that is where the supply chain becomes very useful,”he said.

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