Country's Covid-19 infection rate rises to 3%
Pakistan received two million doses of the Sinopharm vaccine from China Sunday night, according to the National Health Services Ministry.
They will be used in the government vaccination drive against coronavirus.
Last week, a shortage of vaccines was reported at inoculation centres in multiple parts of the country, after which the government released 150,000 doses from its reserves.
According to health authorities in Islamabad and Karachi, the AstraZeneca and Pfizer vaccines were not widely available. The stock of Chinese-made vaccines is, on the other hand, sufficient to meet the local demand.
The AstraZeneca and Pfizer vaccines will be “particularly used on those who have to travel for work or study to countries that are only accepting certain vaccines,” said Asad Umar, who heads the National Command and Operation Centre on coronavirus.
They were donated to Pakistan by the Biden administration through United Nation’s COVAX programme.
Pakistan recently received a tranche of the Pfizer vaccine as well.
On Monday, the country’s coronavirus infection rate increased to 3% with 1,347 new cases and 19 deaths reported in the last 24 hours. Pakistan has reported over 1,000 cases for the fifth consecutive day.
With Eidul Azha around the corner, the government is fearing a fourth wave of the deadly virus. Last week, Umar warned that Pakistan may be hit by the fourth wave of virus infections if people stopped being cautious.
“In the absence of strong SOP enforcement and continued strong vaccination programme, the fourth wave could emerge in Pakistan in July,” he tweeted.
The minister advised people to follow the SOPs and get vaccinated.