Our babies are at high risk of getting disabilities over vaccine shortage – Mothers

Nursing mothers have recounted how the vaccine shortage in parts of the country is affecting their babies.

A nursing mother at Adabraka Polyclinic in Accra, Naa Dromo Torto told TV3’s Judith Awortwe-Tandoh on Tuesday, March 7 that her 4-month-old baby has not received the polio vaccine for two consecutive months.

She said “Some mothers gave birth last month and they have not gotten the vaccines, this month too we are not getting  so I think those babies are at high risk in experiencing some form of disabilities.”

Asked what assurances have been given to them to get their babies vaccinated, she said “Last month, they actually told me that the vaccine is finished so this month,  Today too we are hearing the same story that there is still a shortage.”

Another mother Georgina Annum said “My baby is 9 months old. My baby has to take two vaccines, Polio and Yellow Fever but there is a shortage so right now we are waiting for the nurses to provide some for us. For two months now my baby has not been taking the two vaccines.”

Parts of the country have lately been experiencing a vaccine shortage of vaccines.

The Minister of Health Kwaku Agyeman-Manu is expected to explain to Parliament the measures instituted to deal with the situation.

Last week Tuesday, February 28 he was unable to show up in Parliament after being invited to explain issues surrounding the vaccine shortages in parts of the county.

The Clerk of Parliament’s Health Committee in a letter that invited the Health Minister said “I have the direction of the Chairman of the Committee on Health to invite you to an emergency meeting to brief the Committee on the cause of vaccine shortage in Ghana and the measures being put in place to address the situation, on Tuesday, 28th February 2023 at 9:00 a.m. at the Committee Room 1&2, New Administration Block, Parliament House.

“The Committee also requests the presence of the following institutions’ heads and relevant officers: the Ghana Health Service, the National Health Insurance Authority, the Global Fund, the Ministry of Finance, and the Vaccine Control Programme.”

But the Member of Parliament (MP) for Dormaa Central did not appear, a situation that got members of the committee furious.

Expressing his disappointment over the failure of the Minister to show up, the Member of Parliament for Asawase who is also a member of the Health Committee Muntaka Mubarak said “The Minister of Health being invited to the Committee of Parliament, he himself being a Member of Parliament having in mind the provisions of the 1992 Constitution and the ranking member following up with even a call a week before the meeting, and the matter in question is the time that elsewhere Parliament would invite the minister within 24-hours and he has to appear because of its urgency.

“Now, you have a minister of health who for me, for lack of a better word, I will say disrespectfully refused to attend to the invitation of the committee.

“It tells you how he is running the Ministry, it is just unfortunate that we have a government where a lot of its actors are behaving as though they are doing the citizens a favor by occupying those offices, instead of them attending to the urgent needs of their ministry.

“Everyone around this table is very much aware of the importance of the expanded programme on immunization, every other thing can wait but not the expanded programme on immunization because the six or so killer diseases, ones you don’t get immunized in a certain period you endanger all of us because this is something the children will miss and you cannot easily correct.”

Source: By Laud Nartey

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