Minister of Health Pavithra Wanniarachchi says 99% of individuals who succumb to COVID-19 have not been vaccinated against the coronavirus.
Speaking during a media briefing today at the Bandaranaike International Airport, after officially accepting the consignment of 1.6 million Chinese manufactured Sinopharm vaccines donated by the Chinese government, Minister Wanniarachchi said the government hopes to reduce the number of COVID-deaths through vaccinations.
The Minister said, the highest number of vaccine doses were administered yesterday in Sri Lanka.
When questioned by media on the status of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, she said there is delay in obtaining the vaccines due to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics that is currently underway adding she expects the vaccines to arrive in the country during the next few days.
Minister Wanniarachchi said 1.5 million AstraZeneca doses will reach Sri Lanka adding those awaiting the second jab will be vaccinated promptly.
Meanwhile, joining the media briefing State Minister of Production, Supply and Regulation of Pharmaceuticals Prof. Channa Jayasumana said the number of patient’s dependant on clinical oxygen has increased during the past few days.
State Minister Jayasumana said this situation is an indirect warning of the spread of the Delta virus variant in the country.
The State Minister said it takes time for one’s immunity to be boosted after being administered a COVID vaccine.
State Minister Jayasumana added individuals must adhere to health guidelines in order to avoid the risk of contracting the coronavirus especially at a time when the Delta variant is spreading.
The State Minister said a large number of teachers have unfortunately gathered for protests across the country and are at risk of contracting the Delta variant.
He said public gatherings including protests are not a requirement at this time adding everyone should contribute to COVID mitigating efforts.