Sri Lankan authorities on Friday granted approval for the emergency use of the Oxford-AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine, Minister for Pharmaceutical Production and Regulation Channa Jayasumana said.
Jayasumana said the National Medicines Regulatory Authority (NMRA) had granted the approval for the emergency use of the British vaccine while several other vaccines were also in the pipeline at the National Medicines Regulatory Authority, reports Xinhua news agency.
This the first time Sri Lanka has approved a vaccine for emergency use.
State Minister of Primary Health Care, Epidemics and Covid-19 Disease Control Sudarshani Fernandopulle said the vaccine will be imported to Sri Lanka by mid-February.
She said Sri Lanka will get 20 percent of the population covered by the World Health Organization, while for another 30 percent of the population, the government will purchase a vaccine.
“Our intention is to cover at least 50 percent of the population,” Fernandopulle said.
Sri Lanka has to date recorded over 56,000 Covid-19 patients and recorded 276 deaths.