22.50 lakh Covid vaccine jabs arrive from two sources
Bangladesh has received 22.5 lakh doses of Covid-19 vaccines from two sources last night and early today.
At 11:22pm yesterday, 12.5 lakh doses of Moderna vaccine arrived at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport from the US under the Covax facility, the global vaccine alliance.
Health Minister Zahid Maleque, Foriegn Minister AK Abdul Momen, US Ambassador to Bangladesh Earl R Miller and other senior officials received the vaccine.
An Emirates flight carrying the vaccine consignment arrived at the airport at 11:22pm, said health officials.
At 12:35am today, the country received 10 lakh doses of Sinopharm vaccine purchased from China.
The 22.5 lakh doses are part of around 45 lakh doses -- 25 lakh of Moderna and around 20 lakh of Sinopharm -- that are supposed to reach the country by today.
Bangladesh procured 1.5 crore doses of Sinopharm vaccine and is supposed to get it in three months.
The government has already resumed vaccination in all district hospitals and 40 centres across the capital with 11 lakh doses of the Sinopharm vaccine gifted by the Chinese government.
The country has so far inoculated less than three percent of its population. Its vaccination campaign, which started on February 7, stumbled due to suspension of vaccine supply by the Serum Institute of India amid a surge in cases and deaths in that country.
Bangladesh and Serum had an agreement that the latter would ship three crore shots of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine to Bangladesh in phases between January and June.
Serum delivered the first consignment of 50 lakh doses in January, but shipped only 20 lakh the following month. No shipment has been made since.
Besides, India sent 3.3 million doses as gift to Bangladesh.
Amid a fast depleting vaccine stock, Bangladesh suspended administering the first dose of the vaccine on April 26. The registration process for vaccination was suspended nine days later.