KARACHI: The Sinopharm Covid-19 vaccine’s first consignment containing 83,000 doses arrived at the Karachi airport recently.
“We have received the first consignment of the Sinopharm vaccine from Islamabad, which arrived here in Karachi on Tuesday evening through a commercial flight. It comprises 83,000 doses, and from Wednesday, the vaccination of frontline healthcare workers will commence at a ceremony,” an official of the health department told The News.
Health department and EPI officials had sought security from the police and Rangers to shift the vaccine consignment to their cold storage, from where it would be dispatched to nine vaccination centres in Karachi, as well as to other centres set up in Hyderabad and Nawabshah.
Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah, along with provincial health minister Dr Azra Pechuho and health secretary Dr Kazim Jatoi, will be inaugurating the vaccination drive at the Ojha campus of the Dow University of Health Sciences (DUHS) on Wednesday (today). They will also visit another vaccination centre at the Kahliq Dina Hall on MA Jinnah Road, where the Covid-19 vaccine will be administered to frontline healthcare workers.
So far 170,000 healthcare workers had registered themselves with the health department for the vaccination, but the vaccine doses received so far from the Centre were enough for only 41,500 persons, officials said, adding that after the first dose of the vaccine, each recipient would receive the second dose of the vaccine on the 21st day to have the maximum immune response from the vaccine.
National Command and Operation Center (NCOC) officials are in Karachi to supervise the arrangements for the vaccination drive. They visited various vaccination centres on Monday to review the arrangements and expressed their satisfaction.
An NCOC team, led by Brigadier Ejaz and Brigadier Zia for Corps 5, visited a vaccination centre established at Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre, where Executive Director JPMC Dr Seemin Jamali and Project Director EPI Dr Akram Sultan briefed them about the arrangements.
The team was informed that 14 vaccination centres had been set up in the province, including nine in Karachi Division. Of the nine centres established in the city, two each have been set up in the South, East and Central districts, and one each in the Korangi, Malir and West districts.
The other districts where the vaccination centres have been established are Sukkur, Larkana, Hyderabad, Shaheed Benazirabad and Mirpurkhas. In Karachi’s District South, one vaccination centre has been set up at Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre, and another at the Khaliq Dina Hall. In District East, one vaccination centre has been established at the Ojha Campus of the Dow University of Health Sciences, and another at the Aga Khan University Hospital.
In District Central, one vaccination centre has been set up at the Sindh Government Hospital Liaquatabad, and another at the Sindh Government Hospital New Karachi.
In District Korangi, the vaccination centre has been established at the Sindh Government Hospital Korangi No. 5, in District Malir, at the Urban Health Centre in Thado Nalo, and in District West, at the Sindh Government Qatar Hospital.
Sindh’s other vaccination centres have been set up at the Liaquat University Hospital in Hyderabad, the HIS Hospital in Sukkur’s Labour Colony, the Chandka Medical College Hospital in Larkana, the MCH Society in Nawabshah and the District Hospital Mirpurkhas.