WHO starts shipping Sinovac and Sinopharm vaccine under COVAX program
WHO’s pandemic program aims to ship 100 million doses of the Sinovac and Sinopharm COVID-19 jabs by the end of September.
Chinese vaccination will be sent mostly to African and Asian countries, in its first delivery of Chinese vaccines, a WHO document shows.
The Chinese shipments will aid the spluttering global COVAX vaccine sharing program which is far behind its time to deliver 2 billion doses this year
The COVAX program is suffering through the supply problems and export restrictions enforced by the main producer India.
It will also increase Beijing’s vaccine discretion exertions despite concerns over the effectiveness of the Chinese vaccinations.
Out of the 100 million Chinese vaccines, half will be delivered by Sinopharm and half by Sinovac, with deliveries scheduled for “July to September 2021”, stated a WHO document.
A spokesperson for the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI), which co-leads COVAX along with the WHO stated around 10 million Sinopharm jabs had been shipped by mid-August.
China’s trade ministry did not answer appeals for comment about when the Chinese vaccines would be delivered.
Whereas Chinese vaccines have been distributed to 60 countries, mostly in Africa, which is probable to receive a third of the 100 million doses.
COVAX’s allocation of Chinese vaccines came after the WHO gave emergency approval to the Sinopharm shot in May and Sinovac in June.
The facility anticipates delivering about 500 million doses by the end of September.
The program has so far shipped 215 million vaccines, mostly AstraZeneca’s.
On the contrary, Ukraine is the only country in Europe on the COVAX list for Chinese shots and it will receive about 160,000 Sinovac doses.
Asian countries will receive more than 25 million Chinese vaccines, of which nearly 11 million Sinovac doses would go to Indonesia, making it the largest receiver of Chinese vaccination through COVAX.
Indonesian govt has decided to give boosters, largely with the Moderna vaccine, to healthcare workers who have mostly been vaccinated with Sinovac shots.
Brazil and Chile have mirrored a similar move since they had deployed Sinovac shots.
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