COVID-19 Vaccines

COVID-19 vaccines

Africa’s largest-ever immunization drive is well underway, with COVID-19 vaccines being administered in almost all African countries. 

Vaccines are the most critical tool to end the pandemic and to save lives and livelihoods. Equitable access to safe and effective vaccines is crucial and Africa must not be left behind. No-one is safe until everyone is made safe by vaccination. 

Safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines are a game-changing tool in the fight against COVID-19, but for now we must keep wearing masks, washing our hands, ensuring good ventilation indoors, physically distancing and avoiding crowds.    

Being vaccinated does not mean that we can throw caution to the wind and put ourselves and others at risk, particularly because research is still ongoing into how much vaccines protect not only against disease but also against infection and transmission.

WHO is at the centre of Africa’s COVID-19 vaccine rollout, providing crucial coordination assistance, comprehensive policy and technical guidance and tailored policy and practical support to African countries.


47 African countries have joined the COVAX facility, which aims to ensure equitable access to safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines globally.

For Africa, the aim is to vaccinate at least 20% of the population by providing up to 600 million doses by the end of 2021. The first phase of 90 million doses will support African countries to immunize 3% of the African population that are most in need of protection, including health workers and other vulnerable groups, in the first half of 2021.

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Rolling out COVID-19 vaccines in Rwanda

Kigali, 06 April 2021– Forty-eight hours after Rwanda received shipments of COVID-19 vaccines, vaccinations began in earnest, with high-risk population given priority. The country plans to vaccinate a third of the population in 2021 and double that figure next year.

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