Lebanon has reserved around 2 million coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccines from the American multinational pharmaceutical corporation Pfizer, caretaker Health Minister Hamad Hasan said on Monday.
Speaking with Independent Arabia, Hasan said that the booked vaccines will be given to around 30 percent of the Lebanese population.
“Lebanon booked with American Pfizer company around 2 million vaccines to be distributed free of charge to segments of the society, as targeted in a plan placed by the company and the Lebanese ministerial committee [tasked with monitoring COVID-19],” he said.
Hasan also announced that the National Committee for Coronavirus Vaccine Management was formed in Lebanon two weeks ago.
Health workers, the elderly, and other groups considered the most vulnerable to the epidemic will be primary targets in the distribution process of the Pfizer vaccine when it arrives in Lebanon. It is expected to reach the country in late February 2021.
Funding from the budget of the Health Ministry, the general budget reserve, donations from some public administrations, in addition to a World Bank loan, through the Lebanese government, will collectively be utilized to cover the cost of the contract with Pfizer and COVAX, Hasan said.
COVAX is a global initiative that aims to provide countries around the world with equitable access to safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines, in collaboration with vaccine manufacturers, after the vaccines are licensed and approved.
Lebanon recently emerged from a 2-week total lockdown that was deemed ineffective in curbing the soaring COVID-19 cases that had prompted its imposition.
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