When will Georgia receive its first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine?
While discussing the Covid-19 vaccination process with Director-General of the WHO Tedros Adanom Gebreisus, Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili has stated the government is doing its best for Georgia to receive first doses of vaccine as soon as possible, Trend reports citing Agenda.ge.
During a phone call with Gebreisus, Garibashvili also discussed the difficulties and delays in the vaccination process and the importance of the support of WHO (World Health Organisation) in a timely start to the inoculation process in Georgia.
Garibasvhvili also noted that in addition to the Covax platform (COVID-19 vaccines Global Access Facility), the state is in active negotiations with international partners and vaccine manufacturers to receive the first doses of the vaccine in a timely manner.
While talking about the global pandemic, Garibashvili and Gebreisus also talked about the importance of equitable distribution of Covid-19 vaccines so that all states enjoy equal opportunities in this regard.
Garibashvili also said that even the countries with the strongest economies were hit as a result of the pandemic and Georgia is not an exception.
One year has passed since the first case of the new coronavirus was detected in Georgia. For a year now, the whole world has been living completely differently, in a difficult mode. Countries with the strongest economies have been hit the hardest. Georgia is not an exception. The pandemic affected everyone and everything”, said Garibashvili.
Officials of the Health Ministry and the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) said earlier in February that Georgia would receive the first doses of the coronavirus vaccine by the end of February. However, on February 24 the Health Ministry said that the exact date of Covid-19 vaccine import was not known yet.
The Deputy Health Minister Tamar Gabunia said the delay is linked to ‘additional demands from Pfizer, though she did not specify what kind of demands the company has.
The first Covid-19 vaccine to be introduced in Georgia is the Pfizer vaccine.
The Ministry of Health said earlier in February that Georgia would receive 29,250 doses of the Pfizer vaccine by the end of the month, which would suffice for nearly 14,500 medical workers.
Health officials also said that after the Pfizer vaccine, Georgia would receive 31,500 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine in early March via the Covax platform, while the other 150,000 doses would be imported based on direct negotiations with the British-Swedish pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca.
The Georgian government has plans to vaccinate 60 per cent of the country’s population of 3.7 million people this year.