Health care workers in the state have been charged to be Risk communicators and help spread information about the safety of vaccine.
The Delta State Commissioner for Health Dr. Ononye Moriah Mordi gave the charge today when he declared the 2 day training of health workers on Covid 19 vaccination open.
Dr. Ononye who noted the various campaigns against the uptake of the Covid 19 vaccine said as health workers they should be a voice in demystifying the rumors.
“As Frontline health workers you have a role to play in allaying the fears of your patients. All assumptions, misconception and myths about the vaccine can be easily handled using scientific facts”.
The Delta State health boss while discussing some frequently asked questions said, “The known benefits of COVID-19 vaccination outweighs the perceived risks. The vaccines do not cause COVID-19 because they do not contain the Coronavirus. Taking the vaccine will protect you and other people, especially those that are at significant risk of severe infection.”
In her opening remarks, the chairman of Delta State Primary Health Care Development Agency (DSPHCDA) Dr Isioma Okobah said that vaccines are the main defense against viruses.
“Vaccines have been proven time and time again as the sure defence against viruses and diseases. Small Pox, guinea worm and most recently Wild Polio Virus have been eliminated through vaccination”.
She conveyed His Excellency, the Governor’s commitment to the vaccination exercise. “Come Friday March 12th, His Excellency the Governor Ifeanyi A. Okowa will launch the Covid 19 vaccination by being the very first person in the state to be vaccinated. As always the Governor is very interested in Primary Health Care activities and this vaccination and has given approval for all logistics needed for the smooth roll out of the phase 1”.
Dr. Okobah further urged healthcare workers to take advantage of the opportunity provided by the government to protect themselves and curb the spread of COVID-19 infections.
Lending his voice to the safety of COVID vaccine, the Executive Director of the agency Dr. Winful-Orieke Jude said there are no differences with other vaccines, being used in preventing other diseases.
He said “I understand their skepticism as there is always fear in anything new. Vaccines are meant to save lives. The COVID 19 vaccine has been approved by WHO, certified by NAFDAC and produced under strict adherence to safety and legal protocol. It does not contain harmful substances or microchips and cannot alter human genetic information (DNA).”
The two (2) day training is to update participants on the proper handling, storage, distribution, administration and waste management of the COVID 19 vaccine. They are also trained on demand generation, mobilizing communities for COVID vaccine, surveillance and management of adverse effects following immunization and how to respond to questions and concerns raised by local populations.
The Executive Secretaries of Local Government Health Authority, Local Immunization Officers, Health Promotion Officers, Diseases Surveillance Notification Officers, Cold Chain Officer, Health management information Officers, Monitoring and Evaluation Officers and State Technical Officers from the twenty five (25) LGAs are participants of the training which has facilitators from National Primary Health Care Development Agency, WHO, UNICEF, DSPHCDA and AFENET.