91,200 doses of AstraZeneca vaccines arrive

The Ministry of Public Health announced the arrival of 91,200 vials of Oxford-AstraZeneca, part of the shipments contracted with the Pan American Health Organization-Covax Facility. The vaccines were manufactured in South Korea. The vaccines will be used to complete the second doses for medical workers and others who received the Astra Zeneca vaccines, the first to arrive to the country in mid February of this year.

Public Health Minister Daniel Rivera said the vaccines were purchased for US$4.27 the dose.

He answered questions of journalists about persons who had received as second dose the Chinese Sinovac vaccine. He said this was unnecessary because the AstraZeneca second dose could be applied within 8 to 12 weeks. In the DR, the first vaccines to arrive, the Astra Zeneca batch from the India Serum Institute, were used to vaccinate Covid-19 staff starting 16 February. The 12 weeks are up in mid-May.

Dr. Rivera said that it was incorrect to vaccinate a person with a different brand and that people who received a different second dose would be monitored.

Meanwhile, the media reports that Haiti has rejected receiving its share of Covax Facility AstraZeneca vaccines. Haiti has one of the lowest rates of virus spread in the Americas compared to their population. Haiti has 1,113 cases per 1M inhabitants, compared to 23,293 cases per 1M inhabitants in the DR. While the Dominican Republic is paying US$4.27 for each vial of AstraZeneca vaccine, Haiti is receiving its allotment as a donation. Haiti has not yet begun to vaccinate its population.

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6 April