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Childhood vaccine shortage: Parliament summons Agyeman Manu

Parliament has summoned the Health Minister, Kwaku Agyeman Manu to appear before the House and answer questions about vaccine shortages in Ghana.

Mr Agyeman Manu is also expected to explain measures to address the situation.

It followed a Daily Graphic report about the nationwide shortage of childhood vaccines.

Under the routine vaccination programme, Bacille Calmette-Guérin (BCG), a vaccine for tuberculosis (TB) disease; oral polio vaccine 0 (OPV); Measles-Rubella; Meningitis and Diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis (whooping cough) are administered.

Vaccines against polio, hepatitis B and Haemophilus influenza type B (DPT/Hep B/ Hib 1) and six infectious diseases that are particularly dangerous to babies are also among those administered.

The Clerk of Parliament’s Health Committee in a letter to the Health Minister said  “I have the direction of the Chairman of the Committee on Health to invite you to an emergency meeting to brief the Committee on the cause of vaccine shortage in Ghana and the measures being put in place to address the situation, on Tuesday, 28th February 2023 at 9:00 a.m. at the Committee Room 1&2, New Administration Block, Parliament House,” the clerk of Parliament’s Health Committee wrote in a letter to the Health Minister and copied to the heads.

“The Committee also requests the presence of the following institutions’ heads and relevant officers: the Ghana Health Service, the National Health Insurance Authority, the Global Fund, the Ministry of Finance, and the Vaccine Control Programme.”

Meanwhile, the Director-General of the Ghana Health Service (GHS), Dr. Patrick Kuma-Aboagye says efforts are underway to replenish vaccines used for routine immunization of babies from birth to at least 18 months, which are currently in short supply.

Reacting to the Daily Graphic publication on the shortage, he gave the assurance that Ghana will receive new stocks of the childhood vaccines in the next two weeks.

“We have acknowledged that there has been a shortage, we were anticipating we will get it much earlier [but] it was delayed …we are working with UNICEF and their other partners to ensure that within the next two weeks, we are able to bring you the vaccines”, he said.


Source: Graphic.com.g


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