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Vulnerable pregnant women to get Sinopharm

By Dinitha Rathnayake

 

The Sinopharm Covid-19 vaccine manufactured by the Beijing Institute of Biological Products based in China, is to be administered to pregnant women with complications in their pregnancy from tomorrow (9) onwards.

Public Health Services Deputy Director General and Ministry of Health Communications Director Dr. Hemantha Herath, addressing a media conference yesterday (7), said that the Sinopharm vaccine has been approved for use on pregnant women.

The vaccine will be first administered to vulnerable pregnant women in the Piliyandala area and will be launched at the Piliyandala Medical Officer of Health (MOH) Division.

Speaking at the same press briefing, Family Health Bureau Director – Maternal and Child Health Dr. Chithramalee De Silva explained the pregnant women who would fall under this category.

“We recommend this vaccine for pregnant women who are above 35 years, expectant mothers who are obese or overweight with a high body mass index, and those who have chronic diseases such as cancer and kidney failure.”

Such pregnant women would be selected for vaccination with the help of the relevant MOH Division and the Public Health Midwives (PHMs).

Meanwhile, the College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists also announced that the vaccine was approved by the Ministry of Health at the request of the college.

The World Health Organisation’s (WHO) Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunisation has issued interim recommendations for the use of the Sinopharm inactivated Covid-19 vaccine. The WHO recommends the use of the said vaccine on pregnant women as the benefits of vaccination outweigh the potential risks. To help pregnant women make this assessment, they should be provided with information about the risks of Covid-19 in pregnancy.