Covid-19 vaccine in UAE: Enough vaccines to cover entire population


Abu Dhabi - The confirmation comes as the UAE is pressing the accelerator on the nationwide vaccination campaign.


Ashwani Kumar

Published: Thu 14 Jan 2021, 8:37 PM

The UAE will never run out of Covid-19 vaccine stock, said a top official from the health sector.

The confirmation comes as the UAE is pressing the accelerator on the nationwide vaccination campaign. The pace of distribution has seen 1.5 million doses being administered until Thursday at a rate of 15.45 per 100 people — a second-best data recorded globally.

Dr Walid Zaher, chief research officer and vaccine project leader, G42 Healthcare, assured that the country will be able to provide vaccines to every citizen and resident. “Vaccine is available at all centres. There is enough to vaccinate the entire population,” he said during an interview held at Masdar City in Abu Dhabi.

Asked if fresh cargo of vaccines have been flown into the UAE as part of the Hope Consortium, Dr Zaher said: “We can only say that there is enough vaccine to vaccinate all the population.”

Dr Zaher pointed out the government has taken all measures to facilitate the distribution of free vaccines to the masses by increasing the number of health centres.

“Everyone wants to take the vaccine. There is a physical restriction at the centres as they can handle only a limited number in a day. But the government and Seha (Abu Dhabi Health Services Company) have opened up every physical location possible to accommodate people coming to take the vaccine.”

He noted the tremendous response from the people shows their trust in the vaccines provided in the country.

“This shows their willingness to contribute to a better and safer community and a return to normalcy soon. We should be thankful that there is a vaccine in the country. This is what matters. There are countries where there is no availability of vaccines.”

Echoing similar views, Dr Nawal Al Kaabi, chairperson, National Covid-19 Clinical Management Committee, noted that many of her colleagues in other countries have to wait for at least a month to get an appointment for vaccination.

Dr Nawal is glad to see the community members showing responsibility and taking the jab. She recollected that people in the UAE have always shown great determination in joining the national cause.

“When the Covid-19 situation emerged, people here followed the precautions and that’s why we managed to control the (outbreak of) pandemic. Our numbers were not significant, and the UAE’s death rate is one of the lowest in the world. And the day we announced the trial, the initial plan was to conduct it within the healthcare facilities. But because of the overwhelming response we received, we decided to move to Adnec. And we managed to complete the recruitment within six weeks, which is, I think unheard of, especially since the UAE is a small country.”

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