August 2, 2023


The Ghana Red Cross Society, in collaboration with Hope for Future Generations, NAP+, and Young Health Advocates Ghana, sponsored by UNAIDs, organized a workshop in Kumasi on September 2nd, 2022. Over 14,000 individuals in the Ashanti and Greater Accra areas have been contacted to improve community involvement in response to COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy reduction in Ghana.

Between May and August of this year, the “COVID-19 Vaccine Hesitancy” project—funded by the Joint United Nations Program on HIV/AIDS—was carried out as part of the Partnership for Accelerated Contact Tracing (PACT 2.0).

Hope for Future Generations (HFFG), the Ghana Red Cross Society, the National Association of Persons Living with HIV (NAP+) Ghana, Young Health Advocate Ghana (YHAG), and the Ghana Health Service collaborated on it (GHS).

At a close-out for PACT 2.0 in Kumasi, Ms. Catherine Bentum Williams, the project coordinator at HFFG, gave a thorough account of how the objective was met. She stated that the initial target population for sensitization was 3,900 persons.

However, the initiative was able to connect with more than 14,00 people, which is a 300 percent increase from the original aim.

2,000 of these individuals received the vaccination throughout the workout period.

Ms. Bentum Williams clarified that the project’s target population of 2,253 People Living with HIV was part of its purpose, which included optimizing vaccination uptake in order to meet the National HIV goals.

She did, however, identify several difficulties, such as remote immunization sites, some medical professionals’ reluctance to administer the vaccine, and their frustration with patients displaying viral symptoms. Others included myths and misunderstandings, churches delaying member involvement, and health personnel arriving late for work at the facilities.

She hoped that increased financing would allow for broader coverage of information and public awareness campaigns on COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy and other associated issues with community health.

Dr. Emmanuel Tinkorang, the Ashanti Regional Director of Health, commended the groups for taking on the initiative and said that while vaccination coverage in the region was only approximately 30% at the project’s beginning, it has now increased to 42 percent, showing a notable improvement.

Although there was no ongoing COVID – 19 cases in Ashanti, he said that individuals should try to be immunized to stop any potential outbreaks in the future.

Dr. Tinkorang warned that “the struggle is not done; without vaccination and increased coverage there is a possibility the region might have an epidemic.”

Source GNA
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