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1 million AstraZeneca doses expected in June

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Maziko Matemba

Malawi is expected to receive one million more doses of Oxford AstraZeneca Covid vaccine from the Covid Vaccine Access Facility by the first week of next month.

Presidential Taskforce on Covid co-Chairperson Dr Alfred Nkhoma confirmed the development Monday.

“We still have at least around 150,000 doses of Covid vaccines in the country right now,” he said, indicating that the doses are enough to take the country through to June.

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Meanwhile, health rights advocate Maziko Matemba has commended the government for making sure that there is a continuous availability of the vaccine.

“If anything, stakeholders should devise ways that would ensure that an increased number of people get the jab to avoid expiry of the vaccine,” Matemba said.

He has raised the sentiments at a time the Ministry of Health is expected to dispose of 19,610 doses of the vaccine on Wednesday, after the doses’ expiry date on April 13 2021.

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Secretary for Health Dr Charles Mwansambo indicated last week that the expired doses were out of the 102,000 doses with a short life that arrived in the country on March 26 this year.

At least 333,632 doses of Covid vaccines had been administered by Sunday. The vaccination exercise commenced in March this year.

Those that received their first dose are expected to get their second, which is the final one, from June 5.

Malawi received its first batch containing 360,000 doses in March this year and President Lazarus Chakwera launched the vaccination exercise on March 11 2021, when he and Vice-President Saulos Chilima led Malawians in getting jabs.

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