Baby Vaccine Shortage: Health Minister Begins Answering Questions Over Nationwide Crisis

Baby Vaccine Shortage: Health Minister Begins Answering Questions Over Nationwide Crisis

  • The health minister showed up in Parliament on March 7, 2023 to answer questions on how he is dealing with the nationwide shortage of baby vaccines
  • Kwaku Agyeman Manu was scheduled to show up on February 28, but he failed to appear in Parliament triggering the wrath of the Minority MPs
  • However, on March 7, 2023, when he showed up in Parliament he said there are plans to get the vaccines before the House excused him

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Health minister Kwaku Agyeman Manu showed up in Parliament on Tuesday, March 7, 2023, to answer questions on the shortage of critical vaccines to immunise infants against deadly childhood diseases.

The minister did not show up for a similar appointment with legislators last week, Tuesday, February 28, 2023, prompting the Minority to issue a warning that he must not repeat that.

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However, according to a Citi News report the Agyeman Manu showed up before he was excused by Parliament.

Health Minister fails to show up in Parliament to answer questions on what he's doing to deal with the baby vaccine shortage.
L-R: A mother cradling her two-day-old baby boy, and Health Minister, Kwaku Agyeman Manu. Source: Getty images.
Source: Getty Images
"Parliament has excused the Health Minister, Kwaku Agyemang-Manu, over the steps being taken to address the shortage of childhood vaccines in the country," the report said.

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The minister has said there are plans to secure the vaccines by the end of this week.

"The recent shortage in vaccines for measles is regrettable. It is symptomatic of the steady global decline in measles vaccinations since beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic," he said before promising that the vaccines would be procured soon.

Baby vaccine shortage gets severe nationwide

The vaccine shortage has become so severe that there has been an outbreak of measles among babies in parts of the country.

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Measles had been a rare childhood disease in Ghana for many years prior to the unprecedented vaccine shortage.

The influential Paediatric Society of Ghana estimates that about 500 cases of measles have been recorded in the country, especially in the north of Ghana, due to the unavailability of vaccines used to immunise babies.

"We are worried because we are just sitting and watching, and it is getting worse by the day," said Dr Hilda Boye, president of the Paediatric Society of Ghana.

Midwives Association wails over baby vaccine shortage

Meanwhile, has reported that the shortage of vaccines for babies has prompted the association for midwives and nurses to warn mothers to take extra care of their babies.

President of the Ghana Registered Nurses and Midwives Association Perpetual Ofori-Ampofo said on March 1, 2023, that because babies can't be immunised against diseases like TB and measles due to the shortage, mothers should not give their babies to relatives.

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She has asked the government to act with speed about the vaccine shortage because it is a public health emergency.

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