The World Health Organization has approved the emergency use of a COVID-19 vaccine manufactured by China’s Sinopharm. WHO’s decision opens the possibility that Sinopharm’s offering could be included in the United Nations-backed COVAX programme in coming weeks or months, and distributed through United Nations children’s agency UNICEF and WHO’s Americas regional office. A summary posted online by WHO suggests the vaccine is about 78 percent effective.
Two health workers from Mayo Hospital in Lahore have tested positive for Covid-19 after having been administered a vaccine. The Mayo Hospital health support staffer and his staff nurse wife at the institution were among the seven employees administered the Chinese Sinopharm vaccine recently under a government drive to vaccinate health professionals.
Pakistani planning minister Asad Umar has said that Pakistan would start registering people aged 65 and above so they could be vaccinated in the second phase of the coronavirus vaccine drive. In the second phase, 17 million of the “most vulnerable” people, including 9.5 million above 65 years of age, would be given shots. The vaccination of those who register in this category will start in March.
The National Command and Control Centre (NCOC) has released an eight-step procedure to get the COVID-19 vaccine in Pakistan. The plan aims to vaccinate people under an integrated digital system following the best international practices, according to a statement by the NCOC. All details of immunisation will be handled through the National Immunisation Management System, which the federal government developed last year.