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‘Vitamin C will not save you from catching Covid-19’

Dr William Nii Ayitey Menson

Contrary to popular belief that taking Vitamin C supplements will protect an individual from catching Covid-19, a new opinion suggests otherwise.

It may rather shorten the duration of a cold. This is according to Dr William Nii Ayitey Menson, Public Health Physician and Fellow in charge of Health and Equity at the Centre for Social Justice.

Dr Menson was speaking at a webinar organised by the Centre for Social Justice, under the topic, ‘Covid-19 vaccines in Ghana, Availability, the Science and the Myths.’

The webinar was held to ascertain Ghana’s readiness to deploy vaccines as part of measures to contain the virus.

Speakers at the webinar included the Programmes Manager of the Expanded Programme on Immunisation, Dr Kwame Amponsah-Achiano, who outlined the national vaccine deployment plan and Mrs Helena Kemetse, an investment banker and COVID-19 patient advocate.

The session was moderated by Dr Sodzi Sodzi-Tettey, Chairman of the Governing Council of the Centre for Social Justice.

Dr Menson described as “patently false” theories that COVID-19 vaccines have been manufactured as a way of depopulating Africa.

He cautioned that safety protocols would still have to be adhered to, after vaccination.

“Even if you get the vaccine, you should continue to wear a mask around others, wash your hands and practice physical distancing. There are a few reasons for this, the first is that both of the authorised vaccines require two doses given three to four weeks apart to achieve the best possible immunity,” he said.

Other myths he debunked for lack of evidence included the belief that the virus was created in a lab and the perception that self-medication with chloroquine is effective.

Dr Mercy Ahun, former Manager of the National Immunisation Programme, observed that given the plethora of myths circulating, the deployment of the vaccinations would be “business unusual”, requiring intensive public education to debunk the myths.

Dr Sodzi-Tettey said that the Centre for Social Justice had begun an information dissemination campaign to provide credible information on COVID-19 for citizens.

He noted that the webinar was the first time that the Ministry of Health had provided details about the National Vaccine Deployment Plan for COVID-19.

He thanked the Ministry for partnering the CSJ to publicise the plan.

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