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Mbarara COVID-19 Vaccination Centers Register Low Uptake Of Booster Dose

Harrison Kagure, the head of Communication at the COVID-19 Treatment Center in Mbarara Regional Referral Hospital, says only 288 people have turned up for the booster COVID-19 dose in the last three weeks.
Harrison Kagure Head Of Communication Mbarara Regional Referral Hospital

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There is poor uptake of the COVID-19 booster vaccines at vaccination centers in Mbarara City three weeks after the government rolled out the mass vaccination campaign across the country. 

Harrison Kagure, the head of Communication at the COVID-19 Treatment Center in Mbarara Regional Referral Hospital, says only 288 people have turned up for the booster COVID-19 dose in the last three weeks. 

According to Kagure, they received 5200 doses expecting to get many people. He blames the low uptake on the laxity of the COVID-19 task force that he says hasn't done enough to mobilize residents for the booster dose vaccination.

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He wants the Mbarara City and Resident District Commissioners to revitalize the responsibilities of the COVID-19 task forces to ensure the vaccines don't expire before usage.

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Dr. Celestine Barigye, the Director of Mbarara Regional Referral Hospital, says that the leaders have resorted to only talking about other issues and ignoring COVID-19 due to the fewer positive cases. He says as the COVID-19 Vaccine decreases in one’s body, the immunity also reduces, which requires a booster dose.

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Dr. Mugisha Keirukye Longino, the Mbarara City Principal Health Officer, says that they have noticed the low turn up at all health centers involved in the vaccination campaign. He, however, says that they are still challenged as to why people are not turning up for the COVID-10 booster dose. 

According to Keirukye, they have only used 692 out of the 20,110 doses they recieved for the third phase of the vaccination. He says they had a micro plan with set targets but have performed poorly due to poor mobilization strategies and are holding meetings to find a solution to the low turn-up.

Robert Kanusu, the Deputy Mbarara Resident City Commissioner concurs on the complaints about the laxity of the task forces because of the new parish Development Model.

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Martha Kyomuhendo, a resident of Ruharo, who we found at Kakoba Health Center IV taking her booster vaccine, said that people have fear of the booster doses because they lack knowledge. 

She wants all the stakeholders to come out and sensitize the masses on the benefits of booster doses. Mbarara regional referral hospital Covid-19 treatment center has registered 8 admissions, two deaths and 59 patients are under home-based care.

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