EghtesadOnline: India’s Bharat Biotech will supply Iran with 400,000 shots of its coronavirus vaccine, COVAXIN, over the next two weeks, bringing the total number of imported doses to 1 million, the National Coronavirus Headquarters announced.
“The cumulative number of vaccine doses delivered from Russia, China and India to immunize vulnerable groups will increase to 1 million,” Alireza Raeisi, the headquarters’ spokesman, was quoted as saying by IRNA.
In televised remarks on late Saturday, Raeisi noted that Iran will also receive the first batch of COVAX’s AstraZeneca vaccines in the next three weeks.
“In late March, 1.1 million shots will arrive into the country under COVAX, increasing the total number of doses to 2 million,” he said.
On the same day, Heidar Mohammadi, an official with Iran’s Food & Drug Administration, announced that under COVAX, Iran will receive 3.12 million AstraZeneca shots from South Korea before the end of the year.
COVAX is a vaccine-sharing program backed by the World Health Organization to ensure the equitable distribution of vaccines for poor and middle-income countries.
It has promised to deliver 237 million doses to 142 countries and it began its vaccine rollout last week, making the first deliveries to Ghana and Ivory Coast.
New Year Holidays
Raeisi said on Sunday that five days before the start of the new Iranian year on March 15, the National Coronavirus Headquarters will announce the details of travel regulations for the 13-day holidays (starting March 21).
“Our recommendation to the public is to refrain from travelling during the holidays. Nevertheless, the final color codes for cities across the country will be disclosed on March 15,” he said.
Authorities have color-coded cities, ranging from blue to red, to categorize regions based on the extent of virus transmissions and they update the cities’ status every Saturday.
Iran logged 8,000 more confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus on Sunday, taking the national tally to 1.689 million, spokeswoman for the Health Ministry, Sima Sadat Lari, said.
“Over the past 24 hours, 93 Covid-19 patients lost their lives, bringing the death toll to 60,687.”
Over 1.44 million Iranians have so far recovered from the respiratory illness and roughly 3,800 remain in critical condition and are hospitalized in ICU units.
Iran has carried out more than 11.27 million diagnostic tests since the start of the pandemic.
Global Covid-19 infections soared to 117.1 million on Sunday and the outbreak’s death toll reached 2.6 million.