The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has received dossiers for Chinese vaccine and three others for evaluation amid the ravaging COVID-19 pandemic in the country.
This is according to the Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire, who addressed reporters in Abuja on Monday during a briefing by the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19.
He identified the COVID-19 vaccines as Sinopharm Vaccine of China, Sputnik V vaccine of Russia, Covishield or Astra Zeneca manufactured under license by Serum Institute of India and Covaxin by Bharat vaccines of India.
“The National Agency For Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has received dossiers for Sputnik V vaccine of Russia, Covishield or Astra Zeneca manufactured under license by Serum Institute of India, Covaxin by Bharat vaccines of India and the Sinopharm Vaccine of China, for evaluation and validation for use in Nigeria. Some of them are nearly ready for results,” he said.
“It is important to stress that all covid19 vaccines carry a certain amount of risk and any vaccines not approved by the Federal Ministry of Health through its Agencies cannot be used in Nigeria.
“The government will not be responsible for the safety or efficacy of vaccines given outside the framework of the Government. All the needs of Nigeria have been carefully calculated by NPHCDA and it is possible to accommodate all interests in the framework.”
The Minister also announced the donation of 100,000 AstraZeneca or covishield vaccine doses by the Indian government.
Speaking on the Ebola outbreak in Guinea, Ehanire said the Ministry of Health is closely monitoring the situation and other disease of public health concern.
He explained that “Nigeria’s Port Health Services have been put on alert on land, sea and Air borders and all major hospitals have also been put on notice to alert health workers to have a keen index of suspicion and to check patient travel history, especially at Outpatient departments, and report concerns to infectious disease focal persons and the State epidemiologists without hesitation.”
According to him, stricter infection prevention and control measures, including Personal Protective measures, must be taken immediately there is reason to suspect.
“Nigeria is willing to send experienced volunteers from our Centres of Excellence on Viral haemmorrhagic fever, to support WHO measures to contain Ebola resurgence in our West African subregion.
“It is important to protect the subregion from the catastrophic burden of dealing with two severe diseases of public health concern,” he added.