Libyan authorities are speeding up their efforts to kick off their COVID-19 vaccination campaign amid an increase in infections and deaths in the country.
Prime Minister Abdulhamid Dbeibeh launched the vaccination program at the beginning of the week, calling it a “blessed day” in the fight against COVID-19 after he received his first shot.
Head of the Libyan National Center for Disease Control Badr Al-Deen Al-Najjar said that 18 municipalities are now ready to receive the Sputnik V vaccines.
The center has been preparing inoculation centers to meet the required procedures for storing and then giving the vaccines.
Najjar said the center has so far received 253,000 doses of the Sputnik V and AstraZeneca vaccines and is awaiting approval for their use.
He urged people to sign up to receive the vaccine through registering through the dedicated website.
So far, only 450,000 people have registered, but he hoped more would join soon, adding that the Sputnik V vaccine will be given to people under 60, while AstraZeneca will be given to those above 60.
“Sputnik V is the most used vaccine in dozens of countries, has very few side effects and has an efficiency rate of 90%. The center launched a campaign in cooperation with UNICEF to monitor the vaccination process in all of the municipalities.” Najjar continued.
Health Minister Ali Al-Zanati said previously the government has so far ordered enough doses to inoculate 1.4 million of the country’s more than seven million people.