By Tonderai Saharo
MASVINGO received its first batch of the Covid-19 vaccine Friday with officials saying vaccination on frontline workers in the health sector across the province will begin next week.
The delivery of the of 22 000 doses follows the shipping of 200 000 jabs of the Chinese made Sinopharm vaccine which came as a donation to the country early this week.
Updating members of the Covid-19 risk communication taskforce Friday, provincial information officer Rodgers Irimayi said the vaccine was being stored in a cold room under conducive temperatures.
He said all the province’s seven district health centres will receive their shares by Sunday.
“The Provincial Medical Director Dr Amadeus Shamhu accompanied by the Provincial Development Coordinator Dr Jefter Kuziva Sakupwanya and members from the Health and Care department received 22 000 doses.
“According to the PMD, vaccination of frontline workers will commence next Monday in all districts.
“The vaccine will be distributed to all districts up to Sunday,” he said.
The arrival of the vaccine, which is being administered on a voluntary basis, has been received with mixed feelings from both frontline workers and ordinary citizens in Masvingo.
The province has recorded 2 290 positive cases and 66 fatalities since the virus was first dictated nearly a year ago.
“Personally, I am not comfortable in taking the vaccine. I’m not convinced that I will not have aftereffects from this vaccine,” said a health worker who declined to be named.
Government insists the Chinese vaccine was safe for the population with senior officials who include Vice President Constantino Chiwenga taking the first doses Thursday.