YAOUNDE, Cameroon

Over 49,000 vaccinations have been administered against the novel coronavirus in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), authorities in the country said on Friday, along with the World Health Organization (WHO).

A total of 268 vaccination sites across the country have given 49,102 shots since April 19, with the top vaccinator among the Central African country’s eight provinces being Kinshasa province with 20,189 jabs.

Response teams remain fully mobilized to monitor, prevent and respond to the coronavirus pandemic in the country, said a report by the WHO and DRC.

The DRC has so far recorded 39,395 coronavirus cases, 28,137 recoveries and 898 deaths, according to the WHO.

Active cases over the last five weeks have increased over five-fold from 2,000 to more than 10,000, while the fatality rate is at 2.3% across the country.

The DRC is one of the 14 countries in the world where Delta variant, first identified in India, has been detected.

“It is strongly recommended that everyone maintain a high level of adherence to vaccination and individual prevention measures, screening as well as strengthening of contact tracing,” the report said.

The country received 1.7 million COVID-19 vaccines from the COVAX initiative in early March.

COVAX, co-convened by the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), the Vaccine Alliance (Gavi) and WHO, work with the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) to seek to ensure equitable access to vaccines.

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