Cameroon received 1,590,000 million doses of Bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG) vaccine at the end of last month, public health officials revealed. This is a relief for parents who have not been able to give their infants this recommended vaccine against tuberculosis for almost a month now.
Dr. Njoh Andreas, Deputy Permanent Secretary of the Expanded Program on Immunization, blamed the shortage on supply delays and slowness in the manufacturing process due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
"We have experienced a shortage in a few regions, partly due to the delay in receiving requested vaccines. This delay is also partly related to the burden of the COVID-19 pandemic that has affected several regions of the world," said Dr. Njoh.
Vaccine doses have been delivered to the 10 regions as needed. The Central region has the largest stockpile, with 80,000 doses. The North 70,000, Littoral 62,000, West 50,460, Northwest 31,000, Adamaoua 30,000, Southwest 29,000, East 25,000, South 15,000, and Far North 1,000. The distribution strategy includes catching up on the vaccine for babies born during the shortage period.
This is not the first time the country has faced a shortage of this kind. Apart from partial shortages, the biggest was that in December 2017, which had raised a wave of panic. At that time, the government blamed it on a bottleneck of orders in the international supply circuit.