Sri Lanka expecting 500,000 Covid vaccine doses on Thursday
February 22, 2021 05:16 pm
The Serum Institute of India has confirmed the delivery of the next consignment of Oxford–AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine ordered by Sri Lanka’s State Pharmaceuticals Corporation (SPC).
Acting Minister of health Professor Channa Jayasumana said that the consignment of 500,000 doses of the vaccine is expected to reach the country on Thursday night.
The State Pharmaceutical Corporation has signed the order with Serum Institute of India (SII) for 10 million doses of the vaccine. This agreement had been approved by the Attorney General last week.
Accordingly, the first batch of these vaccine doses are expected to reach the island on Thursday (25).
The Vaccination drive commenced on 29 January after Sri Lanka received a donation of 500,000 doses of Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine manufactured by the Serum Institute in India.
They were administered as a priority to frontline health workers and members of the Armed forces. Last week, the vaccination was extended to the general public and MPs.
Oxford-AstraZeneca’s Covishield is being manufactured by Pune-based Serum Institute. The SII has collaborated with Oxford University and pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca for making the vaccine.
The World health Organisation (WHO) has assured Sri Lanka that it would provide vaccines for 20 per cent of the local population free of charge.