News

Over 80% of eligible population fully vaccinated

BY Buddhika Samaraweera

Under the Covid-19 vaccination programme, both doses of a Covid-19 vaccine have been administered to about 84% of the total population above the age of 16 who are eligible to receive the vaccines, while 97% of this population segment have been administered the first dose, according to the latest government data.

State Ministry of Production, Supply, and Regulation of Pharmaceuticals Secretary Dr. S.K. Ratnayake told The Morning last week: “Our initial target was to vaccinate about 70% of the total population who are eligible to receive the vaccines against Covid-19. Accordingly, that target has been achieved.”

He said that accordingly, the importation of a Covid-19 vaccine required for the first phase of the vaccination programme has been completed by present, adding: “However, based on the decisions of health authorities with regard to the Covid-19 vaccination, more vaccines would be imported in the future.”

Speaking further, Dr. Ratnayake said that the US-German Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine required for the Government’s programme to administer a booster Covid-19 vaccine dose is currently being imported.

He said that about 14.5 million doses of the Pfizer vaccine have been ordered for the first phase of the programme.

“These days, the country receives Pfizer vaccine doses on Mondays every week. By the end of November, it is expected to receive the entire order of 14.5 million doses,” he said.

Sri Lanka is currently administering the Oxford-AstraZeneca, Sinopharm, Sputnik V, Pfizer, and Moderna vaccines against the Covid- 19. According to data available in the Epidemiology Unit of the Ministry of Health, Sri Lanka has, as of 8.30 p.m. on 6 November, administered a total of  29,374,502 doses of Covid-19 vaccines including 22,694,879 doses of Sinopharm, 2,894,483 doses of Oxford-AstraZeneca, 314,890 doses of Sputnik V, 1,884,549 doses of Pfizer, and 1,585,701 doses of Moderna Covid-19 vaccine. In addition, a total of 54,301 Pfizer Covid-19 vaccines have been administered as booster doses.