Blantyre District Health Office (DHO) has bemoaned the low turnout of people who are visiting COVID-19 vaccination centers in the first days of the month of April as compared to the same period last month.
Blantyre district Medical Officer, Milliam Jere Nyasulu, said this during a press briefing on the status of the vaccination exercise in the district.
Nyasulu singled out inadequate civic education to the masses as one of the contributing factors.
She said: “When we rolled out the vaccine the previous month, we received a huge turnout in all the vaccination facilities more especially in urban areas but since the beginning of this month of April the turnout has drastically been reduced despite our office expecting more people.”
Nyasulu also admitted that his office has not done enough in terms of sensitizing the masses about the exercise saying they had no enough time to reach out to the masses while on the other hand stakeholders did not come out to assist.
She therefore urged the media houses to take a leading role in disseminating the information.
Nyasulu further announced that now the vaccination exercise has been open to all people who are 18 years and above.
As of Thursday, the district had registered 31, 913 people who have received the jab.
In a related development, Blantyre DHO is expected to visit Chichiri prison on Saturday where they expect to vaccinate about 1000 inmates.
Following the development, Malawi Prisons Service Spokesperson, Chimwemwe Shaba has applauded Ministry of Health for including the prisons in the exercise saying the pandemic is still putting the lives of prisoners at risk because it’s difficult for them to observe preventive measures such as social distancing.
As of Friday, April 9, inmates at Chitipa, Mzuzu, Nsanje and Mphyupyu prisons had already been vaccinated.