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1m Doses Of AstraZeneca COVID-19 Vaccine Expired In Nigeria – Reuters

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The international news agency, Reuters has reported that up to one million COVID-19 vaccines are estimated to have expired in Nigeria in November.
AstraZeneca COVID-19 Vaccine
This illustration picture taken in Paris on November 23, 2020 shows a syringe and a bottle reading “Covid-19 Vaccine” next to AstraZeneca company and University of Oxford logos. (Photo by JOEL SAGET / AFP)

Two sources with direct knowledge of vaccine delivery and use told Reuters that the expired doses were made by AstraZeneca and supplied via COVAX from Europe.
READ ALSO: COVID-19: NCDC Registers 55 Infections On Sunday

A third source with knowledge of the delivery was said to have also mentioned that some of the doses arrived within four-to-six weeks of expiry and could not be used in time, despite efforts by health authorities.

A source was quoted saying;

“A count of the expired doses is still underway and an official number is yet to be finalised.”

Another said;

 “Nigeria is doing everything it can. But it’s struggling with short shelf life vaccines. Now (supply is) unpredictable and they’re sending too much”.

A spokesperson for the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) told Reuters that the number of vaccines received and used is still being tallied and that it would share its findings in the coming days.
READ ALSO: We Have Enough COVID-19 Vaccines To Cover 70% Of Nigerian Population – Boss Mustapha

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COVID-19 AstraZeneca Vaccine

Responding to an inquiry by the international news agency, the World Health Organization admitted that some doses had expired but declined to give a figure. It said 800,000 additional doses that had been at risk of expiry in October were all used in time.

WHO said;

“Vaccine wastage is to be expected in any immunization programme, and in the context of COVID-19 deployment is a global phenomenon.”

WHO added that vaccines delivered with “very short” shelf life were a problem.

Workers offload boxes of AstraZeneca/Oxford vaccines as the country receives its first batch of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccines under COVAX scheme, at the international airtport of Accra, Ghana February 24, 2021. REUTERS/Francis Kokoroko

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