Vastavam web: The United Arab Emirates has launched COVID-19 vaccinations in the capital Abu Dhabi, health officials said Monday, days after it approved the jab by Chinese drugs giant Sinopharm. The wealthy Gulf nation is one of the first countries to start widespread inoculation, after Britain became the first to roll out a campaign using a vaccine by US pharmaceutical giant Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech. Gulf countries UAE and Bahrain, where third-phase trials of the Sinopharm vaccine were carried out, have both officially registered it for public use after it was previously approved for emergency use for frontline health workers.
“Residents can book an appointment for the vaccine now, free of charge,” a SEHA operator told AFP, with local reports saying at least 45 hospitals and clinics were equipped with the vaccine. Sinopharm—which uses an inactive form of the novel coronavirus—is administered in two doses, 21 days apart, according to SEHA. The UAE has so far recorded more than 184,000 novel coronavirus cases, including 617 deaths.