Rwanda launches COVID-19 vaccination program

Rwanda has started vaccinating high-risk groups against COVID-19 nationwide, notably frontline healthcare staff, with limited vaccine doses acquired through international cooperation, said the Health Ministry on Sunday.

It is the initial phase of COVID-19 immunization in Rwanda and will be followed by a wider roll-out later this month with supplies expected from COVAX and the African Union’s Africa Medical Supplies Platform, it tweeted.

The central African country has been battling a surge in infections of COVID-19 which forced the government to re-impose a lockdown last month in the capital Kigali.

The Rwandan government plans to inoculate at least 60 percent of its population in two years, or some 8 million people, to achieve herd immunity against the virus in the country, said Tharcisse Mpunga, minister of state in charge of primary healthcare in the health ministry.

The government is also trying to acquire more vaccines for the whole population, Mpunga said.

So far Rwanda has recorded about 17,000 cases of COVID-19 and 236 deaths.


Story compiled with assistance from wire reports