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500,000 vaccine doses from China arrive at Nur Khan Air Base

By News Desk
March 18, 2021

ISLAMABAD: Another batch of 500,000 doses of Sinopharm's coronavirus vaccine from Pakistan's "iron brother" China landed in Nur Khan Airbase on Tuesday, the Ministry of National Health Services Regulations and Coordination said.

Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Health Dr Faisal Sultan — along with officials from the health ministry — were present at the base to receive the vaccine doses that had arrived via an airbus.

Pakistan, on March 10, launched COVID-19 vaccination for the general public, starting with older people, as it grapples with a high degree of vaccination hesitancy among its 220 million people, even among health workers.

According to a survey released last week, nearly half of healthcare staff had concerns over China's Sinopharm vaccine, which is the only one available in Pakistan for now. Pakistan has recorded 612,315 coronavirus cases and more than 13,000 deaths, with 2,351 infections and 61 deaths reported in the last 24 hours.

The health ministry said the vaccine doses were a "gift" from China and would be distributed among the provinces for inoculation. Thanking China for its generous gift, Dr Sultan said Beijing has always shown unwavering support for Islamabad in times of need.