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HPA aims to inoculate eligible population before AstraZeneca vaccines expire

Lamya Abdulla
08 September 2021, MVT 15:25
(FILE) Healthcare worker prepares to vaccinate: so far 305,571 people have been fully vaccinated in Maldives -- Photo: Nishan Ali/ Mihaaru
Lamya Abdulla
08 September 2021, MVT 15:25

Government aims to vaccinate the eligible population of Maldives against COVID-19 before the shipment of AstraZeneca vaccines currently being used expires in November.

As Maldives is currently using several brands of vaccines to in its inoculation program, it is difficult to calculate how many AstraZeneca doses are left even though Health Protection Agency (HPA) keeps constantly updating how many people have been vaccinated.

The first dose of the AstraZeneca vaccines were administered until September 1. AstraZeneca vaccines are also being given as a second dose to people that had gotten their first jab from Covishield. Both vaccines are made using the exact same formula.

Commissioner of Quality Assurance at Health Ministry Thasleema Usmaan told Mihaaru news that the government was planning to ensure all eligible people are vaccinated before the vaccines expire.

According to HPA, as of Tuesday evening, 386,514 people have received one dose of a vaccine against COVID-19 while 305,571 people have been fully vaccinated.

There are 452,798 people who are eligible to be vaccinated.

The government had planned to buy 700,000 AstraZeneca vaccines.

Thasleema said Maldives had only received the first shipment of AstraZeneca vaccines so far. It is not clear how many vaccines were in this shipment.

The government had previously failed to achieve its goal to inoculate 90 percent of the entire eligible population in Maldives before September started.

However as the eligible population of Maldives is counted inclusive of the Maldivians living abroad, it is believed the actual percentage of unvaccinated people living in Maldives are lower than the projected statistics.

In addition to the 700,000 AstraZeneca vaccines Maldives bought, it received 112,000 vaccines by Japan as well. Additionally, USA had donated 128,700 doses of Pfizer earlier in August.