Pakistan to get Covid vaccines from COVAX next month: sources
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan will start getting the batches of coronavirus vaccines from COVID-19 Vaccines Global Access (COVAX) from next month, citing sources, ARY News reported on Thursday.
Sources closer to National Institute of Health (NIH) told ARY News that the first batch of free-of-cost coronavirus vaccines will arrive in Pakistan by the end of March.
The WHO’s institution will provide free-of-cost COVID-19 vaccines for the 20 per cent population of Pakistan and the country will get overall 45.5 million doses from the Covax is co-led by the World Health Organization, the Gavi vaccine alliance, and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations.
The supply of vaccines will be completed in phases as Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine will arrive in Pakistan during the initial phase, whereas, Pfizer vaccines will be sent by COVAX in the second phase.
Pakistan is likely to get 17.1 million doses of vaccines till June including 7 millions vials of Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine. The second batch will arrive in Pakistan in June which will include 10.1 million doses.
Countries will receive doses in proportion to population size, with the most going to India (97.2 million), Pakistan (17.2 million), Nigeria (16 million), Indonesia (13.7 million), Bangladesh (12.8 million) and Brazil (10.6 million).
Other big recipients are Ethiopia (8.9 million), the Democratic Republic of Congo (6.9 million), Mexico (6.5 million), the Philippines (5.6 million) and Egypt (5.1 million).
For the 92 lower- and lower-middle income economies involved in Covax, funding is covered through donations, while for richer countries, buying into bulk purchases operates like a back-up insurance policy for their own vaccination programmes.
Pfizer-BioNTech is the only vaccine to have received emergency use approval from the WHO. Evaluation is under way for the AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine.