The first batch of 828,000 doses of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine arrived at Khartoum airport on Wednesday. Sudan’s Health Minister, Dr Omar Elnagieb, confirmed at a press conference that the vaccine will be distributed free of charge, giving priority to medical staff, police, the elderly, and those over 45 years of age with chronic conditions.
Sudan is the first country in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region to receive vaccines via COVAX Facility, a coalition co-led by the World Health Organization (WHO), Gavi, the Global Vaccines Alliance and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), that ensures equitable distribution of COVID-19 vaccines to countries regardless of their income. The vaccines were delivered with UNICEF support.
According to a joint statement by the COVAX partners yesterday, the delivery follows the arrival of 4.5 metric tons of syringes and safety boxes, part of a Gavi-funded and supported global stockpile, that UNICEF delivered on behalf of the COVAX Facility on February26, “critical for the safe and effective vaccination”. WHO has worked with national authorities to put a vaccination strategy in place that includes training vaccinators, ensuring vaccine safety, and surveillance for adverse effects.
Source: Radio Dabanga