Rabat – Following Morocco’s efforts to diversify its pool of COVID-19 vaccines, talk about the authorization of a second Chinese vaccine, CoronaVac, has surfaced.
According to TelQuel, a Moroccan media organization, the Directorate of Medicines and Pharmacy (DMP), Bouchra Meddah, gave the Chinese vaccine its marketing authorization in early April. The Moroccan Ministry of Health is still waiting to officialize the announcement.
Moulay Mustapha Ennaji, a renowned professor and virologist who is part of the council overseeing Morocco’s vaccination campaign, recently told TelQuel that “talks with China are underway [to secure] the Sinovac vaccine,” and that Morocco can expect up to 10 million doses of the vaccine, split into smaller batches.
On April 2, SinoVac announced the completion of its third production line for CoronaVac, through which the annual production capacity will reach 2 billion doses.
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A recent study conducted by the Chilean Ministry of Health revealed that the CoronaVac is 67% effective at preventing symptomatic infections and 80% at preventing death among those inoculated, according to results based on data from Chile’s vaccination campaign.
Other less recent results have shown the vaccine to have an efficacy rate ranging between 51%-91%.
Ricardo Palacios, medical director of Brazil’s Butantan Institute, expressed his confidence in CoronaVac. Palacios explained that the vaccine is more effective for people with more serious symptoms, which means that the vaccine could help relieve intensive care units in hospitals.
“The more intense the disease, the more effective the vaccine,” he told the South China Morning Post.
Today, on April 26, Morocco received a new batch of vaccines from Sinopharm, Morocco’s first Chinese supplier.
The new batch, estimated at 500,000 doses, arrived in Morocco today at 7:30 a.m., a Moroccan television channel reported. Excluding today’s batch, China has delivered 2.5 million doses of the Sinopharm vaccine.
Morocco has received a total of 9.5 million doses of vaccines, of which 7 million were from Oxford/AstraZeneca.