Malawi survey confirms efficacy of AstraZeneca vaccine

Malawi survey confirms efficacy of AstraZeneca vaccine

BLANTYRE – In Malawi, a Ministry of Health investigation to help determine the effectiveness of the AstraZeneca vaccine has shown its effectiveness in fighting the coronavirus. The survey was based on current hospital admissions of COVID-19 patients across the country.
Preliminary results of the findings released on Saturday were based on COVID-19 admissions between June 26 and July 8 of this year.

Image of preliminary results of the Malawi Ministry of Health survey. (Courtesy: Malawi Ministry of Health)

These results show that more than 80% of the 227 COVID-19 patients admitted during the period were not vaccinated.

And those who only had one shot of AstraZeneca were 12% while those fully vaccinated were only 4%.

Health Ministry Secretary Dr Charles Mwansambo said it was still too early to measure the effectiveness of the AstraZeneca vaccine based on these results.

“We continue to vaccinate more and currently our vaccination status is still low. But what we have found so far is that the majority of those arriving are those who are not vaccinated, ”he said.

However, he said the results would help put an end to the fears and doubts some Malawians had about the vaccine, which kept them from getting the vaccine.

Malawi has currently vaccinated around 400,000 of the 11 million people needed to achieve herd immunity.

“We therefore encourage more people to come and get vaccinated because, obviously, this is a strong argument in favor of vaccination. I therefore encourage citizens to make sure that they come to be vaccinated, ”Mwansambo said.

In May, Malawi destroyed around 20,000 doses of AstraZeneca vaccine that had expired.

The cremation was largely due to the reluctance of many Malawians to be vaccinated due to concerns about the safety and effectiveness of the vaccine.

Lydia Kamwana, a baker in Blantyre, said the investigation was a wake-up call to her.

“I have not been vaccinated,” she said. “I really wanted to pass the jab but I was so scared. And when I saw these results, the results made sense and I am confident that I will get the vaccine once the vaccine is in stock.

Maziko Matemba is the National Community Health Ambassador in Malawi. He welcomes the results of the investigation, but says the government is now responsible for making sure it has enough vaccines for its people.

“As you know, one percent or less of the population has been vaccinated. So the larger population is not well vaccinated, ”he said.

However, Mwansambo said Malawi is expected to receive a donation of 192,000 doses of AstraZeneca vaccine on Thursday to restock its vaccination centers, which ran out of vaccines in mid-June.


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