Congo’s President, Feliz Tshisekedi decided to postpone vaccination until the mRNA Covid-19 vaccine Moderna became available in his country. He waited for six months because he was not willing to use the AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine. He has now received the first dose of the mRNA Moderna Covid-19 vaccine.
The Democratic Republic of Congo has low vaccination rates
The Covid-19 pandemic hit the African country as hard as or even harder than other countries. However, due to the lack of testing, Congo has few Covid-19 cases registered. But, the reality is that many people have been infected, and even politicians died due to the contagious virus. This summer, Congo’s President announced that the hospital system was overwhelmed and that drastic measures would be taken to stop the upsurge of the virus, especially the Delta variant.
AstraZeneca shots were administered a month later than planned at first
Because many in Congo feared the possible side-effects of the AstraZeneca Covid-19 jabs, the vaccination campaign debuted a month later than the original plan. At the same time, the very president of the country decided to wait until other vaccines would become available and only then get protection against the virus. The fears were connected to extremely rare side effects, blood clots. At the same time, Congo’s capital struggled with the lack of oxygen supply, while the general population seemed unworried about the virus.
Crazy Covid-19 myths in Africa
While other countries debate the need for a third jab to protect people from the Covid-19 virus, many people in Africa are hesitant to get their first shot. The WHO has worked hard to support vaccine distribution in Africa since the beginning of the year, but there are still cases of inequitable distribution. At the same time, many false claims and several conspiracy theories are making the general population skeptical regarding Covid-19 vaccination.
These false rumors are distributed on social media, and many religious leaders have also boycotted vaccination campaigns. Some of the false rumors claim that Covid19 vaccines could cause infertility, HIV, or cancer. Unfortunately, this only causes the continent to struggle with the contagious Covid-19 virus.