Coronavirus vaccination to resume as consignments arrive

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RIYADH — Dr. Muhammad Al-Abdel Ali, spokesman of the Ministry of Health, announced the arrival of new consignments of coronavirus vaccines for their distribution at vaccination centers in various regions of the Kingdom.

He called on all those who received the first dose of the vaccine to schedule a new date to obtain the second dose.

Addressing the daily press briefing on coronavirus situation here on Sunday, the spokesman urged all citizens and expatriates to register via the Sehhaty app to obtain the vaccine.

“The current phase of the epidemiological curve for infections is a sensitive phase that requires utmost keenness and care,” Al-Abdel Ali said. He called on all to strictly comply with the precautionary measures, such as maintaining social distance, continue wearing masks and washing hands.

Deputy Minister of Health for Public Health Dr. Hani Joukhadar said on Saturday that those who had received first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine will be rescheduled to obtain the second dose in the coming week.

The delivery schedules of Pfizer vaccines all over the world had been affected due to the manufacturer’s inability to cope with the huge increase in demand.

In the third week of last month, the Ministry of Health said in a statement that Pfizer Company had delayed the supply of the vaccine to all countries, including Saudi Arabia, to where it is exporting the vaccine as the company was upgrading the production capacity.

Saudi Arabia started the registration for receiving the Pfizer vaccine on Dec. 15 following the approval of the Pfizer vaccine by the Saudi Food and Drug Authority.

Subsequently, the Kingdom started the nationwide vaccination campaign on Dec. 17, by opening the first vaccination center in Riyadh. Vaccination centers were opened in other major cities of Jeddah, Dammam, and Madinah later.

The fifth center will be opened soon in Makkah, and it will be followed by centers in all the regions of the Kingdom over the coming weeks. The Ministry of Health has also approved two more coronavirus vaccines — AstraZeneca and Moderna — after the success of Pfizer vaccine.

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