health

March 22, 2022

LINEO MABEKEBEKE

2 min read

US Global Vax to vaccinate 70 percent for Covid-19

US Global Vax to vaccinate 70 percent for Covid-19

The US ambassador to Lesotho, Maria Brewer

Story highlights

  • Programme is meant to reach far placed communities
  • Govt has implemented strategies for every citizen to be vaccinated

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LESOTHO has failed to inoculate the majority of people living far away from hospitals and clinics with the COVID-19 vaccines due to their inaccessibility, says the Director General for the Ministry of Health, Dr ’Nyane Letsie.

Last week, Dr Letsie said the launch of the Global Vaccine Access (Global Vax) would help the government reach these people residing in the mountain areas with the use of transport and other means in order to access the far placed residents.

Global Vax is the US government’s initiative in partnership with Lesotho meant to boost the COVID-19 vaccination coverage.  

“We are in a campaign to ensure adolescents and young children are also reached - not only those in schools but even those that are out of school,” said Dr Letsie.  

She further noted that the initiative was going to help reach the targeted 70 percent of the population, adding the country’s vaccination programme was a success story because of the similar partnerships.

“There are many vaccines coming from the US because of the partnerships,” she said.

“As we struggled with implementation, particularly inadequate human resources, the U.S partners were there for us to make sure we saved lives.”

Dr Letsie said strategies implemented together with the Ministry of Health and the government would ensure accessibility of vaccines by every citizen.  

US Global VAX programme is expected to help meet the global goal to vaccinate 70 percent of the world’s population against COVID-19 in 2022, including Lesotho.

US Agency for International Development (USAID) will provide an additional US$6.2 million (M93 million) to Lesotho on top of the US$12.4 million (M186 million) that has already been allocated towards the response of the COVID-19 pandemic locally. 

The funding will support activities such as bolstering cold chain supply and logistics, addressing vaccine confidence and demand, and increasing the accessibility of vaccination sites.

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The US ambassador to Lesotho, Maria Brewer said Global Vax’s efforts were underway to incorporate financial, technical, and diplomatic engagement in an initial group of 11 countries with significant need and potential for rapid progress.

“As part of this critical effort, we are pleased to announce that the US agency will provide new resources to support Lesotho’s COVID-19 plans,” she said.

The Executive Director of the Christian Health Association of Lesotho (CHAL), ’Makatleho Mohasi said the body was committed to ensuring that every Mosotho had access to healthcare services, including COVID-19 vaccination to prevent the spread of the virus in the country.

She said the initiative would expand assistance and enhance coordination to identify and overcome vaccine access barriers that the country was facing.

So far, Lesotho has made tremendous progress with its COVID-19 vaccine campaign with an estimated 40 percent of the population already vaccinated.

 

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