Some Bauchi State residents eager to protect themselves against hepatitis disease have lamented their inability to secure hepatitis vaccines for adults.
Some of them who spoke to a Correspondent of the News Agency of Nigeria on Wednesday, said weeks after being tested to be free of the disease at the Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University Teaching Hospital, they could not be vaccinated.
They said they had been checking the hospital but were told that only the vaccines for children were available, and that those for adults were out of stock.
“I had been visiting the hospital for the past one month to get vaccinated but to no avail. My worry is that I may again have to carry out another hepatitis test to be eligible for the vaccination any time the vaccines are available,” said Malam Audu Salihu, one of the residents.
Another resident, Amina Aliyu, said she had combed the town but there was no other place to secure the adult hepatitis vaccine.
Aliyu said: “I was told the vaccines could be procured at one pharmaceutical store only to discover that there was none.
“I am really disappointed that after several sensitization efforts spending resources of government to encourage people go for the hepatitis screening and get vaccinated, the vaccines have suddenly become scarce.”
Health personnel at the ATBU-TH, who spoke to NAN on condition of anonymity, said some of those who had been shuttling between their homes and the hospital for weeks could not hide their frustration.
One of them said: “Some of them that probably had to be encouraged to undergo the hepatitis screening, felt so bad that they told us they will never go for any medical screening at the behest of government again.
“As far as they are concerned, the authorities are not serious; having sensitized people to go for the screening, yet failed to make provision for the vaccines.”
Contacted by NAN on the development, the Head of Department, Internal Medicine, ATBU-TH, Dr. Mustapha Umar, said the hospital had completed arrangements to procure 1,000 doses of hepatitis vaccines for adults.
Umar said: “Three thousand doses of the vaccine meant for adults got finished recently; we procured that large quantity because of the awareness that was created, but some of the vaccines expired due to low turnout for the immunization by adults.”
He called on adults to pick interest in knowing their status and turn-up for immunization, so as not to waste the vaccines that would be procured.