COVID-19 AstraZeneca vaccine arrives Friday 

Main points:
-AstraZeneca vaccine to arrive this Friday
-First 24,000 doses free of charge  provided by the COVAX facility
-People’s Republic of China to provide twenty thousand doses of Sinopharm vaccines

COVID-19 Vaccine|Photo supplied

The first shipment of 24,000 doses of the AstraZeneca, a coronavirus vaccine, will arrive in Honiara Friday this week.

The 24,000 doses are the first tranche of the 108,000 doses free of charge and are provided by the COVAX facility to the Solomon Islands.

This is part of its commitment to support the country to cover 20% of the population by June this year.

Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare said the country needs approximately one million doses of covid-19 vaccines to cover its population.

“Only people above eighteen years of age will take the vaccine.”

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Sogavare said, in addition to AstraZeneca vaccines by the COVAX facility, the People’s Republic of China will also provide twenty thousand doses of Sinopharm vaccines to the Solomon Islands.

“If the current trials on children confirm that children can also be vaccinated, we estimate an additional 600,000 doses will be required to vaccinate the whole population of Solomon Islands,” Sogavare said.

While COVID-19 vaccination is not mandatory, the Government intends to vaccinate every citizen over 18 years and older by the end of 2021.

Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare will take the first AstraZeneca Vaccines once the vaccines arrive and the rollout program starts.

The Ministry of Health is yet to finalize the rollout program plans for the provinces.

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