Ukraine, with financial support from the U.S. government, will receive $2.8 million worth of refrigeration equipment for storing COVID-19 vaccines at primary health care facilities and when using by mobile teams.
According to a press release from UNICEF, which supplied the equipment, funds for the purchase of the equipment were provided by USAID.
Some 3,100 vaccination points, 1,034 of which operate on the basis of primary health care facilities, and 800 mobile teams, will receive equipment.
The equipment includes 5,643 thermal containers, 8,100 thermal bags, 197,730 ice packs and 27,486 temperature monitoring devices.
The first batch of equipment was delivered on September 30 and includes 2,700 thermal bags in which COVID-19 vaccines can be stored at temperatures from +2 to + 8 ° C.
In the future, this equipment can be used for the transportation and storage of vaccines provided for by the national immunization schedule.
Currently, USAID has allocated about $10 million to support vaccinations in Ukraine and donated almost $2.2 million of COVID-19 vaccines to Ukraine as part of the COVAX mechanism.
Currently, more than 14 million doses of vaccines for vaccination about COVID-19 are available in Ukraine, Deputy Minister of Health, Chief Sanitary Doctor Ihor Kuzin said. “For the moment, more than 14 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine are available in all regions of Ukraine, and everyone can choose one of three vaccines of different types. If one does not suit you, then there is always a choice. A person cannot have contraindications to all three types of vaccines,” he said at a press conference in Kyiv on Monday.
Kuzin said that 97% of people who were hospitalized with COVID-19 were not vaccinated.
He reported that 7.9 million people were vaccinated with at least one dose, and 6.4 million people are fully vaccinated.
The pharmaceutical company Lekhim plans to launch production of vaccines against COVID-19 in 2022, the press service of Kharkiv City Council reported.
“This is a very important project. We do not know what the situation will be in a month or two with a pandemic. And the fact that Kharkiv enterprise is going to produce a vaccine and invest about EUR 25-30 million in production is very good,” Ihor Terekhov said.
He also said that Kharkiv local authorities are now doing everything possible to prepare for a likely new wave of coronavirus: drugs, necessary medical equipment and oxygen stations are being purchased.
According to the information posted on the City Council’s website, the CoronaVac vaccine, created by the Chinese company Sinovac Biotech, will be produced in Kharkiv. In 2021, Lekhim Group became the official supplier of this vaccine in Ukraine.
Domestic pharmaceutical manufacturers are negotiating to localize the production of influenza vaccines in Ukraine, the vaccine will be presented on the market in the first quarter of 2022, Deputy Minister of Health, Chief State Sanitary Doctor Ihor Kuzin said in an online interview with medical expert of the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in Ukraine Kateryna Bulavinova.
“Ukrainian pharmaceutical manufacturers are negotiating to localize the production of influenza vaccines in Ukraine. It will be a tri- or quadrivalent vaccine in monodose syringes. We hope that such a vaccine will be available on the market during the first quarter of 2022,” he said.
Kuzin noted that it is also planned to purchase about 1 million doses of the vaccine.
“According to forecasts, we will have the same influenza epidemic season as last year. Since June we have been working with vaccine manufacturers and the pharmaceutical sector. Negotiations are underway to transfer a free vaccine to vaccinate health workers within the humanitarian aid framework. The amount of vaccine that will be supplied to the country for the pharmacy network will be slightly more than last year – about 1 million doses,” the deputy minister said.
In Ukraine, they want to officially allow mixing different types of vaccines, chief sanitary doctor Ihor Kuzin said.
“The National Technical Group of Experts on Immunization, as the main advisory agency of the Health Ministry, recommended to allow the so-called mixing of the vaccine, but under strict observance of certain conditions. We are talking about the possibility of administering a second dose of Comirnaty/Pfizer-BioNTech after the first dose of Moderna’s mRNA vaccine, if it is not possible to complete the vaccination with the same medicine. Also, if a person has a severe allergic reaction to the first dose of the vector vaccine from AstraZeneca, it is allowed to administer a second dose of Comirnaty at the doctor’s discretion,” Kuzin said.
According to him, the relevant decision of the expert group has already been made. Now the issue of issuing the relevant decision and the development of detailed step-by-step instructions are being considered.
The administration of U.S. President Joe Biden has presented a proposed plan for the distribution of the first 25 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines, which Ukraine will receive among others.
“Approximately 6 million will be targeted toward regional priorities and partner recipients, including Mexico, Canada, and the Republic of Korea, West Bank and Gaza, Ukraine, Kosovo, Haiti, Georgia, Egypt, Jordan, Iraq, and Yemen, as well as for United Nations frontline workers,” a message posted on the website of the White House on Thursday reads.
The White House says that the Administration announced its framework for sharing at least 80 million U.S. vaccine doses globally by the end of June and the plan for the first 25 million doses.