Bulawayo City Council (BCC) has announced it will set up mobile Covid-19 vaccination centres in schools to accommodate learners aged 14 and older who want to get their shot.
This follows an announcement by the government that the vaccination campaign will be extended to those between the ages of 14 and 17.
Speaking during a full council meeting held virtually, Wednesday, Chairperson of the Health Committee, Ward 10 councillor Sinikiwe Mutanda said the council would do its best to avail mobile vaccination centres for easy access to the learners.
She explained that this would also benefit the elderly and people living with disabilities who cannot walk long distances to get to council clinics.
Cllr Mutanda was responding to Ward 25 Cllr Mzama Dube who had suggested that for less congestion at the existing vaccination points, the local authority could make efforts to set up mobile centres that would cater specifically for learners without interfering with their lessons.
“It is a noble idea that we have mobile vaccination points. As per council norm whenever we have such programs the council always devices ways of deploying personnel to schools to administer vaccines,” said Cllr Mutanda.
Ward 8 Cllr Shadreck Sibanda noted that these mobile centres should also serve the elderly, people living with disabilities and other community members who have conditions that affect their ability to go to designated clinics for their jab.
Meanwhile, Ward 4 Cllr Silas Chigora implored the health committee to communicate with health personnel not to turn away residents without documentation when they show up for vaccination.
“It is very worrying that some residents were turned away at Princess Margaret where they wanted to get their jabs. I had even written them formal letters to explain that they do not have documentation,” Cllr Chigora said.
“This is a government initiative and the officials themselves stressed that no person should be turned away. Did your committee talk to the health officials that those without documentation can produce letters from their councillors? We cannot have people failing to get this crucial service. It is not their fault that they do not have documentation.”