Pakistan secures 17 million doses of AstraZeneca vaccine

6 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine will be available within first quarter of 2021

There is sone good news on coronavirus vaccines. Pakistan announced that it has secured 17 million doses of AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine through the World Health Organization’s COVAX.

This is in addition to the 500,000 doses of Chinese Sinopharm vaccine donated by China which will be flown to Pakistan in coming days.

“Happy to share that in addition to the 500,000 doses of Sinopharm, almost 7 million does [doses] of AstraZeneca to be made available in Q1 and given to the public free of cost,” Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Health Dr Faisal Sultan said.

Pakistan is all set to begin coronavirus vaccination drive in the coming start next week, beginning with front line healthcare workers.

“COVAX’s timely support and delivery of the vaccine is a testament of global stakeholders’ trust in Pakistan’s preparedness for vaccine roll-out,” he noted.

The development was also shared by Minister for Plan­ning, Development and Spec­ial Initiatives Asad Umar who said that the Pakistan government “signed with COVAX nearly 8 months back to ensure availability.”

More than 543,000 confirmed COVD-19 cases, with close to 12,000 deaths since February 2020 in Pakistan, a country of about 220 million.

AstraZeneca vaccine facts

The University of Oxford partnered with the British-Swedish company AstraZeneca to develop the coronavirus vaccine known as AZD1222. 

  • Efficacy: 62% to 90%, depending on dosage
  • Dose: 2 doses, 4 weeks apart
  • Type: Muscle injection
  • Storage: Stable in refrigerator for at least 6 months

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