Teachers embrace COVID-19 vaccination in Arua City
todaySeptember 23, 2021
By Simon Onziga
The uptake of Covid-19 vaccination by teachers in Arua city is improving much as the completion rate of the two doses in below average. The government listed teachers among those in the priority categories to receive the vaccine and has pegged the reopening of schools to how fast teachers can embrace the exercise. Arua City targeted to vaccinate about 1,800 teachers. But this did not include those from private schools. Sr. Sally Andezu senior nursing officer in charge of vaccination in the city says a number of teachers are slowly embracing the exercise. “We initially mapped out 1,806 teachers. But 474 teachers have so far received their first doses with AstraZeneca and over 1,100 received their second doses. But we still have some teachers who have not yet embraced the vaccination and we want to encourage them to come for it so that we can all contribute together to this reopening of our schools together”, she said. Raymond Ombere, the principal Education officer Arua city says most of the teachers in the public schools have completed the two doses. “We have more than 3,000 teachers in the City but the challenge we have is that there is data on private schools by the time schools were closed. That number of 1,800 are the teachers in public schools. But the good news is that those who received their second doses are 1,147 and this is a good gesture. We are anticipating an increase in number of teachers coming for the jabs, but we still want to encourage more teachers to embrace this exercise”, he said. The ministry of Health recently issued an order giving local governments until the end of this month to vaccinate all teachers and students above the age of 18.
According to a circular addressed to all local governments and signed by the director general of health services, Dr Henry Mwebesa dated September 17, vaccination of teachers and students in tertiary institutions aged 18 and above needs to be carried out with haste since this will determine when learning institutions can be re-opened. Last month, the Health ministry prioritized the vaccination of teachers by ring-fencing 300,000 Sinovac COVID-19 vaccines to carry out vaccination among this priority group that has been reporting low vaccination uptake since March this year.
However, figures from the Health ministry show that only 237,930 teachers and support staff representing 43 per cent of the targeted 550,000 people in this group have received one dose of the vaccine. Only 88,825 teachers have been fully vaccinated.
COVER PHOTO: Hassan Ssenabulya, a teacher at Saidina Abubaker SS in Butambala receives a Covid-19 jab at Kitante primary school. Courtesy photo.