CONAKRY, Guinea (AP) — Guinea will begin vaccinating children aged 12 to 17 in the capital to fight the COVID-19 pandemic in the West African nation, the health ministry said.
The youth vaccinations will start Thursday in Conakry, said officials.
Guinea received shipments of the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines in late October and early November, the National Agency for Health Security said in a statement. It did not specify how many doses were delivered or where they came from, but said they would be used to begin the youth vaccination campaign.
Guinea is the first West African nation to announce vaccinations for this age group, while countries such as South Africa and Morocco in other regions of the continent have already begun youth vaccinations.
Guinea has purchased vaccines from China and Russia and also received more than 194,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine through the U.N.-backed COVAX program.
Guinea has administered more than 2.2 million vaccines against COVID-19, meaning about 5.6% of the country’s population is fully vaccinated, according to the African Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Guinea has had more than 30,700 cases of COVID-19 including 387, deaths, according to Guinea’s Agency for Health Security.
AP writer Carley Petesch in Dakar, Senegal contributed.