Following many other African countries, Benin launched its vaccination campaign against Covid-19 on Monday. The top was given by the Minister of Health.
As planned, the vaccination against Covid-19 began this Monday in Benin. To set an example and calm minds, the Minister of Health, Benjamin Hounkpatin, was the first to be vaccinated, by being inoculated with the first dose of AstraZeneca vaccine. « I have just received the first dose of AstraZeneca vaccine. I’m up and about, still alert and feeling great. Everything went very well, » said the chief health official, visibly satisfied with the start of the campaign in Benin. Benjamin Hounkpatin is expected to receive his second dose on 31 May 2021.
On Wednesday, March 10, 2021, Benin received its first shipment of Covid-19 vaccine offered by COVAX. A total of 144,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine, out of a total of 792,000 planned by May, were received. Eleven days later, the country received 203,000 doses of the Chinese vaccine Sinovac, 103,000 as a purchase and 100,000 as a donation from China.
The vaccination campaign launched today is aimed primarily at health workers, people over 60 and those with co-morbidities.
But the local population is not yet on board, especially with the latest developments regarding the AstraZeneca vaccine. And the Minister of Health is well aware of this. Hence the appeal he made when he received the doses of the Chinese vaccine.
« There have been many legitimate concerns from the population about vaccines, but I would like to reassure them that the scientific world is making sure that all ambiguities are removed and that we can ensure that vaccination is given to the population in such a way that the benefits are major and far outweigh any possible disadvantages, » said the Minister.