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Lanka looking at sources outside India to purchase AstraZeneca vaccine due to supply delay

Sri Lanka is taking a look at sources aside from India to buy the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine in view of delay in securing the vaccines from the Serum Institute of India, well being authorities stated on Saturday.

“The availability is being delayed from India. We have now to know that India has to take care of their very own nation earlier than supplying to us. It’s not that they’ve advised no to us,” Gen Shavendra Silva, the chief of the COVID prevention operations advised reporters. Silva stated that presidential advisor Lalith Weeratunga was taking a look at different nation sources to purchase the coronavirus vaccines.

Sri Lanka was left with solely 300,000 jabs of India-manufactured Covishield when it began rolling out the second jab. Sri Lanka started administering the second dose of the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine on Wednesday after assurances from Pune-based Serum Institute that it might ship extra consignments of the vaccine quickly.

Sri Lanka had began its COVID-19 vaccination programme in late January, after receiving 500,000 doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine from India as a “reward”. Subsequently, Sri Lanka positioned orders with Serum Institute for extra doses of the Covishield vaccine.

Nonetheless, the inoculation programme was affected because the AstraZeneca vaccine producer, Serum Institute of India, suspended vaccine provide, as a consequence of a spike within the variety of coronavirus circumstances in India. The Pune-based vaccine main has entered right into a collaboration with the College of Oxford and AstraZeneca to fabricate the vaccine.

Sri Lanka’s well being officers stated that COVAX facility, a worldwide initiative to make sure fast and equitable entry to COVID-19 vaccines for all nations, no matter revenue degree, too has been hampered as a consequence of delays from the Serum Institute.

Chief epidemiologist Sudath Samaraweera stated Sri Lanka can also be contemplating a mix-and-match strategy to the second dose roll out. “Experiments are underneath manner in different nations and if there are optimistic outcomes, we can provide one other vaccine because the second shot,” Samaraweera stated.

From January 29 to April 30, round 925,242 folks had been given the primary jab of Covishied. China has donated 600,000 doses of Sinopharm vaccines to Sri Lanka. Nonetheless neither the native well being regulators or the WHO have accepted its emergency use and the vaccine was administered on 2,865 Chinese language staff employed within the nation.

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