The country’s vaccination statistics have significantly dropped at a time when the government is targeting inoculating 10 million Zimbabweans by year end to achieve herd immunity.
Long winding queues which used to characterise most vaccination centres in August have since vanished.
According to the latest update by the Ministry of Health and Child Care, 7 069 people received their first jab yesterday bringing the cumulative number to 3 251 466.
To date, a total of 2 517 653 are fully vaccinated including the 9 447 that received their second jabs yesterday.
Speaking during a question and answer session in the Senate yesterday, Health and Child Care Deputy Minister, Dr John Mangwiro acknowledged that the number of people getting vaccinated on a daily basis has significantly gone down.
“Yesterday (Wednesday), the Minister of Health and Vice President, Hon. Dr. Rtd Gen. G.D.N Chiwenga, including Ministers of State and Provincial Health Directors, mapped a way forward in order for us to work with Senators so that when you go to your constituencies, you may help us in creating awareness.”
He reiterated that in other countries there is now a fourth wave of the Covid-19 pandemic, which has been found to be more deadly than the previous waves killing very fast.
“We need to go back to the drawing board and include all major stakeholders, including Members of Parliament, Senators, traditional leaders and religious leaders,” said Mangwiro.
He elaborated further: “Initially we thought after the first 3 months it will be over but the waves continue. If we go back to history, in around 1840 and 1922, we realised that such pandemics survive in society for about five years before they can be eradicated. So let us not fool ourselves and think that it is over, it is still there, so we need to continue creating awareness so that if the fourth wave comes, it will find us prepared.”
Mangwiro said the pandemic could go as far as the fifth or sixth waves or beyond in the next two years.
“We are following research science because vaccination is the way to go,” said Mangwiro.
“All other things are not scientifically proven. What was discovered scientifically is vaccination; so that is what we want to encourage everyone to do. We need to encourage each other to stop being complacent because we are not yet done with that issue.
Earlier on, MDC-T senator Morgen Komichi expressed reservations over the country managing to vaccinate 10 million people by year end.
“Do you think we will achieve this number in the shortest possible time?” queried Komichi.
“The other question is; are people being vaccinated now or are they now relaxed? Are you doing something to continue encouraging people to get vaccinated?”