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Another batch of Covid 19 vaccines due to arrive tomorrow

ECONOMYNEXT- Sri Lanka will get a batch of 264,000 doses of the Oxford, COVISHIELD vaccine through the COVAX facility tomorrow, the Ministry of Health said.

A press release said the consignment, scheduled to arrive on March 07, is part of the 1.44 million doses Sri Lanka will get under the COVAX facility administered as assistance to poorer countries by the World Health Organisation (WHO).

The vaccines will arrive on a specially built aircraft of Emirates Sky Cargo, one in 10 cargo services delivering vaccines for the listed countries.

The Ministry said the remaining consignments will arrive in stages and the delivery of the total amount will be completed by the end of May.

COVAX, a global initiative spearheaded by Gavi, an international vaccine alliance, and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), aims to equitably cover 20 per cent of a signatory nation’s vaccine needs, irrespective of income level. Some 190 countries have signed up for the program, including wealthy nations such as the UK and Canada.

“Citizens above 60 years of age in high-risk areas will be vaccinated using this batch,” the release said.

Meanwhile Deputy Director-General of Health Services, Hemantha Herath said 650,991 citizens in the Western Province have been vaccinated so far.

According to the State Pharmaceutical Corporation, the second batch of the purchased 18 million vaccines from Serum Institute in India, will also arrive next week. (Colombo/ March 5/2021)

Reported by Chanka Jayasinghe

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