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Sri Lanka to start vaccinating over-60s tomorrow with COVAX delivery

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka will commence vaccinating people over 60 in high risk areas of the Western Province tomorrow with the 264,000 doses of Covishield from the COVAX facility, an official said.

Chief Epidemiologist Dr Sudath Samaraweera told EconomyNext today that over-60s in the Colombo area, the Colombo Municipal Council (CMC) area, Gampaha and a number of other areas will receive the vaccine starting tomorrow.

Meanwhile vaccination of those above 30 years of age has discontinued as the remainder of the one million doses from the Serum Institute of India have been reserved for the second jab intended for those who have already received their first dose. This will begin on April 10, Samaraweera said.

Sri Lanka is also looking into reports from Europe that the OxfordAstrazeneca vaccine has been stopped in Denmark, Norway and other countries is suspected of having caused blood clots in some people. However, Sri Lanka will continue to administer the Covishield vaccine, which is the version of the AstraZeneca vaccine manufactured by the Serum Institute.

“No we won’t stop the vaccination program. However, our teams are looking into it,” Smaraweera said.

Sri Lanka has so far vaccinated a total of 759,548 citizens in western province. Meanwhile the number of COVID-19 patients in Sri Lanka has increased to 86,989 with 304 cases identified yesterday. Twelve of the 304 patients were returnees from abroad, official figures showed. (Colombo/Mar12/2021)

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