Iringa gets most of its villages into responding to vaccination drive

05Oct 2021
Friday Simbaya
The Guardian
Iringa gets most of its villages into responding to vaccination drive

​​​​​​​IRINGA District has reached all 134 villages with sensitization on the importance of receiving vaccine to prevent severe effect of COVID-19, leading to increase in response to jab uptake.

 District immunization services coordinator Sospeter Tiara said in an interview yesterday that people in all the villages have been motivated to the point where some clinics have run out of vaccines and are thus seeking help from other facilities.

“The district council received a total of 5,000 doses of Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen jabs and around 3,000 have already been administered to the people,” he said.

Jab delivery services attained that point given the preparations before the start of the exercise arising from the health sector accelerated plan for COVID 19 coordinated by the Ministry of Health and the President’s Office – Regional Administration and Local Governments (PO-RALG), in which case as a district they were able to provide education in the villages on the vaccine.

"Initially,  many people were afraid of the vaccine and many had questions about this vaccine and therefore did not readily respond, but since the start of this programme we have been able to provide education and reach the people where they are, including houses of worship and other places,” he said.

 On the women's side, the coordinator said that adequate education to the people worked, so women have been able to show up in large numbers. Earlier women believed the vaccine prevents reproduction, he stated.

Kimande Health Center medical officer in charge Salim Salim said that they have been able to work with the Itunundu village authorities in providing education in homes and even places of worship and thus increase the level of motivation among the people.

“We also thank Isimani MP William Lukuvi for coming to the ward and mobilizing Itunundu ward residents, assuring them that the vaccine is safe.

Initially, maternal and child care coordinator Leonida Kalinga said that now mothers have begun to understand as previously they did not know what the vaccine was all about.

When they come to the mother and child clinic educational material was imparted and they were able to access the jab service, putting aside the many questions they were asking earlier, she stated.

At the same time, the government in Iringa region has increased the provision of Covid-19 vaccines from 15 centers to 231 centers to move the service closer to the people and speed up the exercise.

Regional Commissioner Queen Sendiga made this observation when meeting primary health care committee bringing together various stakeholders to map out an education drive to get people turn out for the jab.

Regional administrative secretary Happiness Seneda said that since the start of education and promotion of COVID 19 vaccination, the number of those being vaccinated has increased.

Religious leaders and other stakeholders commended the government for implementation of the health sector accelerated plan for COVID 19, seeking to increase the number of vaccinated people.

Education should continue to be provided and reach more residents in the region, they added.