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Pakistan

Pakistan registers 300,000 health workers for COVID-19 vaccination, says Umar

  • Minister says the government is trying to make the vaccine available in the country from more than one sources
  • At the moment there are two anti-coronavirus vaccines authorised for emergency use while phase III clinical trials of the third vaccine by CanSino will be completed by the first week of February: Umar
17 Jan 2021

(Karachi) Planning Minister Asad Umar has announced that registration of 300,000 frontline health workers for coronavirus vaccination across the country has been completed.

A statement issued by Ministry of Planning Development and Special Initiatives on Twitter stated, "About 300,000 healthcare workers have been registered so far.”

The planning minister maintained that health care workers deputed to inject the COVID-19 vaccine had already been trained in administering the jabs.

Umar pointed out the government had given a clear policy that COVID vaccine will not only be procured by the government but the private sector, provinces and hospitals can also procure the vaccine which will be registered with Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan (DRAP).

He mentioned, "The government is trying to make the vaccine available in the country from more than one sources." He said the priority for the vaccine doses will not only be the health workers but it will be also administered to people over 65 years of age. "We have multiple sources for the anti-coronavirus vaccines slated for delivery in February-March. So the vaccines will be procured and rolled out in the first quarter of this year."

He stated that Sinopharm and AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 vaccines have been approved for emergency use in Pakistan.

Asad Umar asserted that provinces and private entities are allowed to import anti-coronavirus vaccines approved by the Drug Regulatory Authority Pakistan (DRAP). Umar said at the moment there are two anti-coronavirus vaccines authorised for emergency use while phase III clinical trials of the third vaccine by CanSino will be completed by the first week of February.

"From day 1, the NCOC has adopted the policy that the federal government shall not have the monopoly to import anti-coronavirus vaccines," the federal minister said.

He said, "Provinces and private entities including hospitals have been allowed to import the vaccines that are approved by DRAP."