Dr. Sudarshini Fernandopulle, State Minister of Primary Health Care, Epidemiology, and COVID Disease Control, acknowledged on Tuesday that Sri Lanka is short 600,000 doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine.
“We are facing a shortage of about 600,000 doses and it is not a matter to hide. We have to tell the country,” Dr. Fernandopulle said in parliament Tuesday (04).
She went on to say that the shortage is not the responsibility of the government, but rather the result of manufacturers’ inability to supply the necessary quantities.
Dr. Fernandopulle said under the first round, 925,242 persons were vaccinated and at present, there is a shortage of 600,000 doses as the country did not get the vaccines ordered from India, which is battling its own COVID-19 resurgence.
She added that the government was working to import Russia’s Sputnik V and Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines.
The State Minister said this during the debate on the adjournment motion on the situation the country is facing in the face of Covid risk.
Dr. Fernandopulle said tests are being carried out to determine whether the first dose could be given from one vaccine and the second dose with another, and it would be possible to give a “cocktail” in the future based on the results of the tests.