Jan 05, Colombo: Sri Lanka is planning to enter into an agreement to secure COVID-19 vaccine via the United Nations-backed COVAX facility, the global initiative to ensure rapid and equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines for all countries, regardless of income level.
The Cabinet of Ministers at its weekly meeting held yesterday has approved the plan to finalize agreements with the producers of COVID-19 vaccines within the scope of the COVAX facility.
The COVAX facility is a global initiative that brings together governments and manufacturers to ensure equal distribution among the countries, subsequently to the manufacturing, of secure and effective COVID 19 vaccines.
Through this facility, the production and development of the vaccines for the COVID-19 are being accelerated ensuring the eventual reach to every country in the world to receive the COVID-19 vaccines.
Under the COVAX facility, COVID-19 vaccine will be given to at least 20 percent of the population in a qualified country to accelerate the approach to vaccination, similar to diagnostic, therapeutic and vaccine production.
Sri Lanka has already joined with the COVAX facility and the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI), which includes the World Health Organization, has accredited that Sri Lanka is eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccines through this facility.
Countries are informed to submit vaccine request applications under two phases to receive the vaccine facility and the first part and part A which includes the information regarding the target group, store capacity, and technical information was submitted by Sri Lanka before the deadline on 07th December 2020. Sri Lanka has submitted aforesaid applications on time.
The second part thereof regarding the receiving of vaccines and signing the compensatory agreement has to submit before 08th January 2021.
The Cabinet has approved the proposal tabled by the Minister of Health Pavithra Wanniarachchi to submit part B of the vaccine application according to the guidelines provided by the Attorney General and to sign an agreement with the manufacturer when allocating vaccines through the COVAX facility.