BY MAVIS N PODOKOLO
ASTRAZENECA covid-19 vaccine supply from India to Solomon Islands could potentially be delayed due to India’s covid-19 situation, says Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare.
Sogavare echoed this earlier this week in his national address.
“As COVID-19 situation in India affects the global supply from India that could potentially delay the supply of AstraZeneca vaccines from India whether through the COVAX facility or from the 600 000 doses that the government of India had indicated it would consider supply it to Solomon Islands,” he said.
Sogavare said despite the delay of AstraZeneca vaccines supply from India he is pleased that Australia has stepped in to ensure Solomon Islands received the regular supply of AstraZeneca vaccines in the next couple of months.
“I am also extremely pleased to inform you that the government of Australia had indicated it can provide more doses of CSL AstraZeneca vaccine to Solomon Islands over and above the initially allocation of 60 000 doses it would start delivering from this week,” he said.
Sogavare said he had directed the Ministry of Health and Medical Services (MHMS) to expedite the analysis and recommendation on the total number of additional doses of CSL AstraZeneca vaccines the government will request from Australian government in the next few days.
He said this request will incorporate the country’s intentions to fully vaccinate the total eligible population in Solomon Islands by December this year.
“I am grateful confident the between the COVAX facility, Australia, India and China together with support from other partners my government will secure the prerequisite number of vaccines to cover the whole country by December this year,” Sogavare said.