Speed is of the essence during vaccine development and campaigns to check the spread of the coronavirus as this pandemic has taught the world. It began with the manufacture of vaccines in record time. It took less than a year for researchers, epidemiologists and virologists to come together in the spirit of cooperation and produce jabs that have given the world a fighting chance against Covid-19. Big Pharma too has delivered in the crunch and their combined stock is rising after years of getting a bad rap.
The UAE hasn’t wasted time and is leading the world in its effort to inoculate 50 per cent of its population by March, which gives it a better chance at herd immunity. It’s a sound strategy — to choke the spread of the pathogen in the country by helping more people develop antibodies using vaccines.
Distribution has been a gargantuan task, more so during the pandemic but the UAE has been up to speed thanks to its superior digital health system that has made it easier to get vaccines to people. More than 100 health facilities in the country have been set up and residents can register online and are sent an SMS to schedule appointments. It’s a smooth and efficient process and has been a success, perhaps the best in the world now that it set to overtake Israel in the number of jabs per 100 people. In fact, the UAE had administered 1.62 doses per 100 people from February 4 to 10, ahead of Israel, which had done 1.25 doses/100, according to Our World in Data.
Vaccine distribution has been rapid since early December. The early-mover advantage gives the UAE a quicker chance of recovery and a return to normal life and economic activity. Business is ready for the changed normal, so are the people in the UAE who want to get on with their lives and make a meaningful contribution to society and the world community.
Getting jabs to every segment of the population has been the stated objective of the government. The leadership has left no stone unturned to procure vaccines from different Pharma companies and countries. Covid-19 jabs by Sinopharm, Pfizer-BionTech, Astrazeneca-Oxford and Sputnik V have been rolled since December, and it’s not surprising that the country surpassed five million doses on Saturday.
The numbers are in the UAE’s favour with cases falling below 3,000 after some concern in January. Bringing down fatalities and severe cases has been the priority for health officials who are working overtime to ensure people get their shots on time, 21 days apart. The government has done its part; it’s now up to residents to take their responsibilities seriously to protect each other and their families. Vaccines have hit their mark. The speed of the UAE’s campaign is turning the tide against the pathogen. People are urged to remain cautious, wear masks, avoid crowds and parties and be patient for the jabs to work. There’s still some way to go to rid the world of this coronavirus.
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