Over 1.6 million Moderna doses have arrived on MondayIt is the first consignment of four million doses purchased by the government through COVAX’s cost-sharing scheme. The second consignment of 2,340,000 doses is scheduled to arrive on Tuesday morning.
Over 1.6 million doses of the Moderna vaccine arrived in Nepal on Monday evening.
The doses are part of the four million doses purchased by the government from the US manufacturer of the vaccine last August.
The doses were purchased through COVAX’s cost-sharing scheme with the Asian Development Bank’s loan.
“A consignment of 1,660,000 doses of Moderna vaccine has just landed at the airport (at 7:35pm),” Badebabu Thapa, a senior official at the Logistic Management Section under the Department of Health Services, told the Post. “We will receive the vaccine only on Tuesday morning. We have requested the airport authority to keep the consignment safe.”
The remaining 2,340,000 doses of the vaccine are scheduled to arrive on Tuesday morning.
The Ministry of Health and Population plans to administer the vaccine to children between 12 and 17 years.
The government started inoculating children in the age bracket of 12 to 17 years with the Moderna vaccine supplied by the COVAX facility from December 20 last year. The facility had supplied 3,712,000 doses of Moderna vaccine in December.
Some children of the said age group from 20 districts, including the three districts of Kathmandu Valley—Kathmandu, Bhaktapur and Lalitpur–were also inoculated with Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine supplied by COVAX.
Earlier, the Ministry of Health and Population had said that it would administer the Moderna vaccine to children of the said age group only in 57 districts. But it later announced that the Moderna vaccine would be given to children in the said age bracket across the country after confirmation of the arrival of sufficient doses of the vaccine.
The vaccination of children of the said age group is ongoing in schools in several districts.
Nepal needs to vaccinate around 27 million of the little over 30 million population, as around three million are children under five years of age. Authorities had decided to inoculate children between five and 11 years but no deal has been reached so far to purchase vaccines for them.
Nepal has so far received 42,048,840 doses of Covid-19 vaccines—AstraZeneca, Vero Cell, Moderna, Janssen and Pfizer-BioNTech.
So far, 12,966,362 people or 42.7 percent of the total population have been fully vaccinated. The Health Ministry said that 168,969 people have taken booster shots as of Saturday.
On Monday, 10,319 people tested positive—8,054 in 16,654 polymerase chain reaction tests and 2,265 in 4,547 antigen tests.
In the last 24 hours, four people died from Covid-19. Active cases stand at 82,550 as of Monday. Of them, 80,779 people are in home isolation.