3 doctors, 1 nurse receive first doses of COVID-19 vaccine in Nigeria

All the recipients have been at the frontline battling the COVID-19 pandemic.

Dr Cyprian Ngong is the first recipient of COVID-19 vaccine in Nigeria [NPHCDA]

Pulse Nigeria

Three doctors and one nurse have received the COVID-19 vaccine in Nigeria, launching the country's vaccination campaign on Friday, March 5, 2021.

Dr Cyprian Ngong became the first recipient of the AstraZeneca vaccine when he received the jab during a launching ceremony at the National Hospital, Abuja.

Two other doctors, Nuru Joseph and Thairu Yunusa, as well as a nurse, Faith E. Eragbai, also received jabs during the ceremony.

All the recipients have been at the frontline battling the COVID-19 pandemic since Nigeria first detected its first case in February 2020.

Dr Ngong, who said he lost his father to COVID-19 months ago, expressed delight at the progress that will be achieved with the vaccination campaign.

"I have dreamt of taking this vaccine. We're happy we're getting the vaccine in Nigeria. The fight is still on, and we'll win," he said.

The AstraZeneca vaccine, which arrived Nigeria on Tuesday, is administered in two doses taken weeks apart.

The vaccine has 63.09% efficacy and is suitable for low- and middle-income countries due to easy storage requirements.

The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) earlier on Friday gave final approval for rollout of the vaccine that was approved for emergency use by the World Health Organisation (WHO) last month.

Officials at Friday's ceremony appealed to Nigerians to cooperate with the government in the campaign to vaccinate 70% of the population between now and next year.

Government officials, including President Muhammadu Buhari and Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, and other strategic leaders are expected to take the vaccine on Saturday, March 6.

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