COVID-19: AstraZeneca vaccine is safe, NMA says


The Nigerian Medical Association (NMA), says the vaccine procured by Nigeria from AstraZeneca company is safe, advising people to get vaccinated against COVID-19.

Prof Baba Issa, Kwara NMA Chairman, gave the advise while speaking with newsmen in Ilorin on Saturday, in response to question raised about the safety of Oxford, AstraZeneca vaccine.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that 10 European countries had suspended the vaccine’s use, following claims of blood clot associated with its usage.
”It depends on the vaccine that they are taking, but the one we have in Nigeria made by AstraZeneca company is known to be safe and efficacious.

“That is why Nigeria has keyed into it and the Kwara Government has taken delivery of some doses of this vaccine.

” So I’ll advise people to take it, it is safe and it is very effective,” Issa said.

The NMA Chairman pointed out that when many people get vaccinated and become immune to the disease, Nigerians will develop herd-immunity.

“Herd immunity is resistance to the spread of an infectious disease within a population that is based on pre-existing immunity of a high proportion of individuals as a result of previous infection or vaccination,” he said.

Issa also advised that those vaccinated against the disease must continue to observe all COVID-19 protocols, such as physical distancing, wearing of facemasks and washing of hands.

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He added that though the number of doses of COVID-19 vaccine in Kwara was not enough, more was being expected, adding that the target was to vaccinate as many people as possible.

He, however, explained that the current batch of COVID-19 vaccine was expected to cover healthcare workers and front line workers in the country.

Prof. Tanimola Akande, former President of Association of Public’s Health Physician of Nigeria (APHPN) said the vaccine was safe, while confirming that he had already been vaccinated.

He said he felt no pain after taken the vaccination urge people to get vaccinated against COVID-19.

Also Mr Mustapha Katibi, the state representative of World Health Organisation (WHO), attested to the safety of the vaccine, saying that it was safe and effective.