In line with President Nana Akufo-Addo's vision to make Ghana a domestic hub for vaccine production in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and to prevent any kind of pandemic or viral diseases, DEK Vaccines Limited has launched a bankable feasibility study (BFS) and vaccine project for this vision to come into fruition.
DEK Vaccines Limited is a partnership of some pharmaceuticals companies in Ghana spearheading this vaccine project.
The company estimates to begin production by the fourth quarter of the year 2024, however feasibility tests and preparations for the establishment of a vaccine (fill and finish) facility have already started with a land completely acquired for the building of a state-of-the-art facility in Ghana.
Funds for the project is estimated at 122.6 million dollars.
The company will have a two manufacturing lines, namely COVID and non-COVID, which means it will produce vaccines for the treatment of Coronavirus and non-COVID vaccines such as malaria vaccines among others.
For production purposes, it has been grouped into three phases with the first phase to be for construction and prequalifcation of the project by the World Health Organization (WHO).
The second phase is for an additional two lines for the production of the vaccines.
The third phase is for a backward integration meaning the country, via DEK Vaccines Ltd, will develop its "own drug products for our own drug consumption" and for export of vaccines.
This was explained by the Director of DEK Vaccines Ltd, Dr. Kofi Nsiah-Poku, during the DEK vaccine project and BFS launch meeting held on Monday, November 28, 2022 at the Fiesta Royal Hotel in Accra.
He noted that the vaccine production is "very important and crucial" for the survival of West Africa.
"We can do almost all the vaccines that are available in the market today," Dr. Nsiah-Poku assured.
He revealed that Africa currently consumes 1 billion doses of vaccines but only 1 percent is produced on the continent.
Over 300 million vaccines are estimated to be produced each year through this project, Dr. Nsiah-Poku added.
He elucidated that this will ensure when there is a future occurrence of a pandemic, "Ghana, ECOWAS and Africa will be ready".
DEK Vaccines Ltd having the responsibility to manufacture vaccines domestically will boost Africa's vaccine production and will produce 13 different vaccines.
Dr. Nsiah-Poku promised the facility will have an ultramodern automated equipment in line with WHO guidelines and in partnership with Siemens in Germany.
Health Advisor to President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, Dr. Anthony Nsiah-Asare, speaking on behalf of the President, also disclosed that the Government of Ghana is committing 25 million dollars for the construction of a vaccine institute in the country.
He pledged the full commitment and support of the President and his government for DEK Vaccines Ltd.
Present at the event were representatives from DEK Vaccines Limited, European Union, Germany Embassy, Spanish Embassy, Food and Drugs Authority (FDA-Ghana), USAID, GIZ, World Health Organization, United States Pharmacopeia, MergeOne Global Partners Ltd, Serum Institute of India, Ghana Health Services, Ghana Medical Association, National Malaria Control Programme, Parliamentary Committee on Health and the Ministry of Health among others.