Male’, Maldives – The Health Emergency Operation Center (HEOC) of Maldives has revealed that the 100,000 doses of the AstraZeneca’s Covishield vaccine received as free aid from India will be administered to 50,000 individuals.
The vaccine shipment arrived at Velana International Airport (VIA) on Wednesday afternoon via an Air India flight, which was received by the Foreign Minister of Maldives Abdullah Shahid and the Minister of Health of Maldives Ahmed Naseem.
With this, Maldives became the first country to receive the vaccine, which was produced in Pune, by the Serum Institute of India. However, Maldivian authorities have announced that the vaccine will only be administered to the residents of the country after getting approved by the Food and Drug Authority of the Maldives, following thorough investigations into the safety of the jab.
50,000 people are likely to receive this vaccine. We received 100,000 doses. It did not cost anything.Health Emergency Operation Center (HEOC)
As per the current priority categories, the vaccine will be first administered to health and social workers, followed by individuals above the age of 50. After this, individuals between the age of 18-50 who fall in the high risk category will also be receiving the shot.
Next in line to receive the shot would be teachers, police and tourism industry personnel, while children and pregnant women are not going to be receiving the vaccine as of now, as trials for children and pregnant women have not yet been concluded.
Despite this, no confirmatory date has been announced as to when the vaccines will be administered in the Maldives, as necessary preparations as still underway. Among this includes an agreement with the AstraZeneca company to procure 700,000 additional Covid-19 vaccine doses, along with the vaccine to be received via the Covex facility, which ensures 20% of the population gets vaccinated.
Currently, Maldives has recorded a total of 14,633 Covid-19 cases, out of which, 13,615 patients have recovered. Unfortunately, Maldives has seen the demise of 49 individuals to the virus thus far.