Azerbaijan aims to accelerate the vaccination of its citizens against Covid-19 with more vaccines imported from overseas manufacturers. According to local media, more than four million doses of vaccines are expected to arrive in the country soon.
“Under the signed contracts, another 4 million 431 thousand doses of Covid-19 vaccine will be delivered to Azerbaijan,” the state-run Azertag news agency reported referring to the State Agency for Compulsory Health Insurance.
However, information about the brands of the purchased vaccines has not been revealed.
Azerbaijani authorities have so far purchased more than 14 million Covid-19 vaccines of various brands, including CoronaVac, Pfizer, Vaxzevria, and Sputnik V. The ongoing vaccination of the country’s citizens kicked off on January 18, 2021.
The Chinese-made CoronaVac vaccine accounts for the largest number of vaccines used against Covid-19 in the country. More than 12 million CoronaVac jabs have already been brought to Azerbaijan in separate deliveries.
In addition to the Chinese vaccine, the Azerbaijani government purchased a total of 432,000 jabs of British-Swedish Vaxzevria (formerly AstraZeneca) vaccines from South Korea within the COVAX initiative. Azerbaijan has also secured purchase contracts for 300,000 doses of the Russia-made Sputnik V vaccines. In addition, almost 320,000 shots of the German-American drug Pfizer-BioNTech have been brought to the country as of November.
As of December 1, the vaccine reserve of Azerbaijan included at least almost 2.4 million doses of CoronaVac and 20,000 doses of the Russian-made Sputnik V vaccine.
According to the latest data compiled by the Operative Headquarters under the Cabinet of Ministers of Azerbaijan, some 11.2 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines have been administered in the country since the start of the mass vaccination. More than 5 million people received the first dose, some 4.7 million - the second dose, while 1.3 million have been given a booster shot that helps improve the protection created by the previous two doses.
The ongoing voluntary and state-sponsored vaccination in Azerbaijan is scheduled for 2021-2022. Those who received two shots of a vaccine are eligible to receive a “vaccination certificate.” At the same time, those who have contracted the virus and fought it off can obtain an “immune certificate.”
Covid-19 has infected 613,059 people in Azerbaijan so far. The virus claimed 8,257 lives. Currently, there are 13,078 active coronavirus patients in the country.
Meanwhile, according to the healthcare authorities and representatives of the World Health Organization (WHO), the new coronavirus variant Omicron has not been found in Azerbaijan. The new strain of Covid-19 was first detected in specimens collected on November 11 in Botswana and on November 14 in South Africa. WHO has received the first reports about this new variant on November 24. The strain has been named B.1.1.529 Omicron and classified as a Variant of Concern (VOC).