Vaccine due in Lanka within two months | Sunday Observer
Covid-19 pandemic

Vaccine due in Lanka within two months

3 January, 2021

Sri Lanka could obtain a vaccine/vaccines for Covid-19 between the second week of February and the last week of March, Pharmaceutical Production, Supply and Regulation State Minister Prof. Channa Jayasumana said.

The Russian company which produces Sputnik V vaccine informed Sri Lanka on December 29, Tuesday that the vaccine can be provided to the country following successful discussions, he added.

Prof. Jayasumana told the media in Colombo that the effectiveness of the local syrup produced by Dhammika Bandara will also be revealed to the country in two weeks at the end of the scientific clinical trials.

Prof. Neelika Malavige of the University of Sri Jayewardenepura Department of Immunology and Molecular Medicine said if discussions are held quickly, vaccines for Covid-19 can be obtained by February and March.

Pfizer, Astrazeneca and Moderna vaccines show a 90 percent efficacy. Astrazeneca and Sputnic V vaccines are suitable in Sri Lanka considering the local conditions, she added.

The vaccines should be administered to people in the high-risk category such as those who suffer from diabetes, cancer, kidney disease, those over 60 and health workers, she added.

The vaccines have not been tested on children under 16 because Covid-19 does not cause any complications in them. The WHO will provide vaccines for 20 percent of Sri Lanka’s population, she said.

The Astrazeneca vaccine can be stored in a normal refrigerator between 2C and 8C while Moderna vaccine can be stored in -20C. Pfizer vaccine needs to be stored in -70C. Only the US uses the Moderna vaccine, she said.

The world needs to live with Covid-19 for another two years and health guidelines should be followed. According to the experts, Astrazeneca is the cheapest vaccine and it only costs one dollar per vial.

The WHO granted emergency validation to Pfizer vaccine for emergency use last Thursday.