South Africa is to receive 1.5 million doses of AstraZeneca’s coronavirus vaccine from India in January and February, the Health Ministry said on Thursday.
Those doses will primarily go to the 1.25 million people employed in the public and private health care systems, the ministry added.
The vaccine – developed by the British-Swedish pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford – is currently being reviewed by the European Medicines Agency (EMA).
South Africa, the hardest-hit country in Africa in real terms, passed the 1-million-case mark in December amid the second wave of infections. As a result, the government imposed stricter measures.
A new variant of the Sars-CoV-2 pathogen is circulating in Cape Province and is considered the driver of the new wave of infections.
Since the mutated virus was first detected in South Africa, many countries have imposed restrictions on travelers from the country.
The restrictions are having a devastating effect on the economy, which is also suffering from increasingly frequent electricity bottlenecks. (dpa/NAN)