Since 2021, Ghana, which received the first shipment of vaccines in the world from COVAX, the global vaccine facility, has ordered or received more than 18 million Covid doses. So far, the country has administered more than 14 million shots — 9.6 million of which came from the U.S., according to government data shared with POLITICO. Over the past two years, the country has also received more than $11.4 million from the U.S. to help treat Covid in the country and to put shots in arms.
But Ghana has struggled to ramp up its vaccination rates, particularly in rural communities like this one in the eastern part of the country near Togo. Last summer, the country was struggling to reach a 10 percent vaccination rate. The situation has improved slightly since then. Now, 19.8 percent of the total population is fully vaccinated. About 25 percent of the 22.9 million of Ghana’s targeted eligible population, which includes pregnant women, is fully vaccinated.
The vaccination situation in Ghana is emblematic of the scene on the ground in many African countries which have struggled to reach the 10 percent mark in recent months. Ghana is one of 11 African countries receiving millions of dollars from USAID under its Global VAX program — a program launched last year to help countries improve, giving the governments money for training vaccinators and hiring drivers to transport doses from cold storage to health centers and hospitals.