First batch to arrive by July end
More doses of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine are expected to reach Pakistan by the end of July.
The country will receive 13 million vaccine doses, confirmed Dr Faisal Sultan, the special assistant to the prime minister on health, on Tuesday.
The vaccine was previously reserved for those with low immunity and travellers.
According, to a source, the first consignment will arrive in July. The second batch of the Pfizer vaccine will reach the country by the end of this year.
Dr Sultan said the government had signed an agreement with vaccine-makers Biotech and Pfizer.
On June 17, the PM’s aide had assured that the vaccine shortage in Pakistan will end by June 20. In a Twitter post, the minister said that another batch of five million coronavirus vaccines will reach the country next week.
Get the next shot as soon as possible, advises Dr. Adam Ratner, a pediatric infectious disease doctor at NYU Langone Health and a vaccine researcher.
You can get your second shot within 42 days of the first one and still mount a full immune response, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Chinese-made vaccines Sinovac and Sinopharm can be delayed by two weeks, the National Command and Operation Centre has said.
The gap between the two doses has been increased from four weeks to six weeks. Medical experts say there’s no harm in delaying the second dose.
The gap between two doses of the Sinopharm vaccine is usually 21 days and 28 days for the Sinovac shot.
Though the NCOC did not provide a reason for its decision, it is believed to have been necessitated by a shortage of vaccines. Earlier this week, vaccination centres in all districts of Karachi were temporarily closed after they ran out of doses.