By Rogers Wanambwa
KIU, Main Campus – Around 18 million doses of the Sinopharm vaccine are to be purchased by the government of Uganda from China. This endeavor is anticipated to cost Uganda around UGX351 billion on the vaccines with each dose costing UGX19,498.
Consequently, a complete dose will cost UGX38,996 which is UGX10,000 cheaper compared to what the government had predicted to spend on AstraZeneca vaccines.
According to the Director-General of Health Services Dr Henry Mwebesa, the government has already ratified a commitment letter for the vaccines.
“The ministry received an offer of the availability of vaccines through the COVAX facility. The vaccine acquisition committee reviewed the offer and recommended the ministry pursue a cheaper and more reliable option. The Ministry of Health has signed a commitment letter with the COVAX facility for a total of 18 million doses of Sinopharm vaccine under this arrangement,” Dr Mwebesa said in a statement released on Thursday, last week.
In May 2021, the Sinopharm COVID-19 vaccine received emergency approval from the World Health Organization (WHO).
The vaccine which is produced by the Beijing Bio-Institute of Biological Products Co Ltd is a two-dose that is approved for use in persons aged 18 years and older. It is suggested the vaccines be taken within a three to four-week interval.
Efficacy studies indicate that the vaccine is assessed to be 79 percent effective in protecting against symptomatic or severe disease across age groups.
Besides, as of August 16, at least one million people in the country had received at least one shot of the vaccine.