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Johnson & Johnson Covid doses arrive Friday

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HARD TO COME BY—Covid-19 vaccines

Malawi is expected to receive 302,400 doses of Johnson & Johnson (J&J) Covid vaccine on August 6 this year as the country continues to vaccinate people against coronavirus, which has claimed over 1,635 people.

Health Minister, who is also Presidential Taskforce on Covid co-Chairperson, Khumbize Kandodo Chiponda said the vaccines would be available in all vaccination sites by Monday, August 9.

This comes at a time the country has almost run out of the 192,000 Oxford- AstraZeneca vaccine doses that arrived in the country on July 24 this year.

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The J&J vaccine requires one to receive one shot, prompting the ministry to announce that it would only be administers to those who have not received any type of vaccine.

“Those that received the first dose of AstraZeneca vaccine are not eligible to receive the J&J vaccine but have to wait for AstraZeneca vaccine to complete their second dose,” said Kandodo Chiponda in her Covid update statement.

The ministry has further emphasised that the different types of vaccines work the same way by reducing the risk of developing severe disease, hospitalisation and deaths due to Covid.

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Kandodo Chiponda said, by Saturday last week, 163,454 doses out of the 192,000 doses had been administered and that most districts had run out of the vaccine.

She assured those that may fail to access the vaccines from the current lot not to panic, indicating that more AstraZeneca doses would arrive in two weeks.

Meanwhile, health rights activist Maziko Matemba has hailed the government for making efforts to bring in additional types of Covid vaccines.

“Bearing in mind that there is a shortage of AstraZeneca vaccine doses, it is important that other vaccines are being brought in. What we need in more sensitisation on the new vaccines,” he said.

By Saturday last week 453,729 people had received the first dose of AstraZeneca while 138,134 had received the second dose.

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