Egypt receives over 650,000 doses of Pfizer's covid Omicron boosters

Ahram Online , Wednesday 22 Mar 2023

Egypt received a shipment of 685,440 doses of the adapted bivalent Pfizer coronavirus vaccine, the Ministry of Health and Population announced on Tuesday.

File Photo: Pfizer has said it is developing a new vaccine targeted specifically at Omicron and expects it will be available by March. AFP


The shipment was delivered by Croatia, Italy and Spain via the COVAX Facility; an international mechanism to ensure developing countries have access to vaccines.

On Sunday, Egypt received a shipment of 599,040 doses from Sweden and France from the same facility.

Both shipments are part of a total of two million doses to be delivered within a week, the ministry added in a statement on Tuesday.

Pfizer and BioNTech's Omicron BA.4/BA.5-adapted bivalent Covid-19 booster is authorised for use by both the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the Egyptian Drug Authority (EDA).

The vaccine was originally released in September 2022 and soon approved by both the WHO and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

The new vaccine provides broad protection against the new variants of COVID-19 including Omicron, said Egyptian health ministry spokesman Hossam Abdel-Ghaffar.

The vaccines will be administered as booster shots for fully vaccinated individuals, he added.

Those who wish to receive the vaccine should register through the vaccination website, according to the health ministry’s statement.

The pandemic took a heavy toll on Egyptians in 2020-2021 before it subsided in 2022.

The country has recorded 515,792 infections and 24,815 deaths since the outbreak, according to the latest figures released by WHO's Eastern Mediterranean region office (EMRO).

Egypt began the process of administering booster shots for fully vaccinated individuals in December 2021.

About 39 percent of the country’s population is fully vaccinated, according to EMRO.

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