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Thursday, 27 May 2021

Eva Pharma gets OK to partner with govt for Sinovac production + at-home vaccine rollout begins in Port Said

We’re one step closer to locally manufactured Sinovac vaccines, after ministers gave privately held Eva Pharma the green light to partner with the higher education and agriculture ministries to produce the jab, according to a cabinet statement. Eva Pharma was among the companies that agreed with China’s Sinovac last month to locally manufacture its vaccine, along with Pharco's BioGeneric Pharma and state-owned Vacsera. The Health Ministry had previously said it planned to manufacture 20-60 mn doses of the Chinese vaccine each year. Though it’s unclear when manufacturing is set to begin, Health Ministry officials said in March that manufacturing should start within a few months, and the first batch of raw materials that will be used to produce the Chinese jab arrived here in Egypt last Friday.

The Health Ministry began yesterday at-home vaccinations for citizens with physical challenges in Port Said according to a ministry statement. Individuals can request at-home vaccines through the ministry website, or by calling the hotline 15335. The ministry has designated 27 vaccine centers across the country to dispatch doses for home vaccinations, Health Minister Hala Zayed said.

Egypt’s on-site vaccination rollout is also getting a shot in the arm, with 403 state-run facilities across the country now administering the jabs, giving them a collective capacity to administer 110k vaccines per day, Zayed said in a separate statement.

As of yesterday, 5.25 mn individuals in Egypt had registered to receive a vaccine, Aysam Salah, advisor to the Health Minister on CIT, said on El Mehwar yesterday. The ministry is now seeing a daily average of 300k registrations, after starting out at 20k per day, Salah said (watch, runtime: 6:54).

Around 1.6 mn people — 1.5% of Egypt’s total population — had received at least one dose of the vaccine as of Sunday, while around 0.3% of the country has been fully vaccinated, Ayman Sabae, health researcher for the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights, tells the National. Egypt could “catch up with other countries” with its vaccination program, especially with the recent addition of new centers and the government’s efforts to facilitate access to the jabs, Sabae said.

The Health Ministry reported 1,151 new covid-19 infections yesterday, up from 1,140 the day before. Egypt has now disclosed a total of 257,275 confirmed cases of covid-19. The ministry also reported 43 new deaths, bringing the country’s total death toll to 14,850.

Only vaccinated people in the UAE will be allowed to attend “live” events nationwide starting 6 June, the country announced Tuesday, in an effort to speed up its vaccination program, Reuters reports. The decision comes one week after Dubai made vaccinations mandatory for people wishing to attend events such as weddings, concerts, and other entertainment activities. The UAE says it has vaccinated over 78% of eligible citizens over 16 years and over 84% of its elderly population.

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