COVID-19: S. Korea to receive 2.71m doses of COVAX vaccines in H1
South Korean health authorities said on Thursday that at least, 2.71 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines were expected to arrive in the country by June, through World Health Organization’s global vaccine project, known as the COVAX facility.
According to the country’s news agency, Yonhap, Korea will receive 117,000 doses of Pfizer’s and 2.59 million doses of AstraZeneca vaccines.
With a population of 52 million, South Korea has secured access to vaccines enough for 56 million people, with the COVAX project will supply 20 million doses for 10 million people, Yonhap further reports.
The country has deals to secure vaccines from AstraZeneca, Pfizer, Moderna, which require two shots and Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen, which requires one jab, while it plans to buy another from U.S’s Novavax.
The government said it has no plan to purchase Russia’s Sputnik V COVID-19 vaccine, which showed 91.6 percent of efficacy in the third stage clinical test.
South Korea plans to begin COVID-19 vaccinations later this month, with front-line medical workers receiving the first shots.
Vaccines from U.S. pharmaceutical firm Pfizer are expected to be first shipped to the country through the COVAX Facility.
On Switzerland’s decision to withhold approval for AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine, the South Korean government said it will await the outcome of a review by the country’s drug safety agency.
A controversy arose globally on the use of AstraZeneca’s vaccine for the elderly, as there is not enough data to back its efficacy in older people.
In its first meeting Sunday over an efficacy review of the vaccine, a panel of South Korean medical experts said AstraZeneca’s vaccine can be administered to elderly people.
The independent advisory panel held a second meeting later Thursday but has yet to reach a conclusion.
The Ministry of Food and Drug Safety said it will postpone the announcement of its results to Friday.
With reports by Yonhap