Tracking the uptake and trajectory of COVID-19 vaccination coverage in 15 West African countries: an interim analysis

Muhammed Olanrewaju AFOLABI*, Oghenebrume WARIRI, Yauba SAIDU, Akaninyene OTU, Semeeh Akinwale OMOLEKE, Bassey EBENSO, Adekola ADEBIYI, Michael OOKO, Bright Opoku AHINKORAH, Edward Kwabena AMEYAW, Abdul Aziz SEIDU, Emmanuel AGOGO, Terna NOMHWANGE, Kolawole SALAMI, Nuredin Ibrahim MOHAMMED, Sanni YAYA

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)peer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


The African Union Bureau of Heads of State and Government endorsed the COVID-19 Vaccine Development and Access Strategy to vaccinate at least 60% of each country's population with a safe and efficacious vaccine by 2022, to achieve the population-level immunity needed to bring the pandemic under control. Using publicly available, country-level population estimates and COVID-19 vaccination data, we provide unique insights into the uptake trends of COVID-19 vaccinations in the 15 countries that comprise the Economic Community of West Africa States (ECOWAS). Based on the vaccination rates in the ECOWAS region after three months of commencing COVID-19 vaccinations, we provide a projection of the trajectory and speed of vaccination needed to achieve a COVID-19 vaccination coverage rate of at least 60% of the total ECOWAS population. After three months of the deployment of COVID-19 vaccines across the ECOWAS countries, only 0.27% of the region's total population had been fully vaccinated. If ECOWAS countries follow this trajectory, the sub-region will have less than 1.6% of the total population fully vaccinated after 18 months of vaccine deployment. Our projection shows that to achieve a COVID-19 vaccination coverage of at least 60% of the total population in the ECOWAS sub-region after 9, 12 and 18 months of vaccine deployment; the speed of vaccination must be increased to 10, 7 and 4 times the current trajectory, respectively. West African governments must deploy contextually relevant and culturally acceptable strategies for COVID-19 vaccine procurements, distributions and implementations in order to achieve reasonable coverage and save lives, sooner rather than later.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere007518
Number of pages9
JournalBMJ Global Health
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 14 Dec 2021
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

The authors thank Professor Brian Greenwood for reviewing the manuscript and for providing financial support towards publication of this paper. We also appreciate Dr Sidy Ndiaye of the WHO AFRO Office for supporting the data curation for this study.


Dive into the research topics of 'Tracking the uptake and trajectory of COVID-19 vaccination coverage in 15 West African countries: an interim analysis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this