Covid-19: Saudi postpones second dose vaccination appointments
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Covid-19: Saudi postpones second dose vaccination appointments

Covid-19: Saudi postpones second dose vaccination appointments

The rescheduling decision was taken due to the shortage of international supplies of vaccines

SAUDI-HEALTH-VIRUS

Saudi Arabia is rescheduling the appointments for those set to receive the second dose of the Covid-19 vaccine in the kingdom, the Ministry of Health announced on Saturday.

The move comes even as the ministry seeks to administer the first dose to all those who are yet to receive the vaccine, the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported.

According to the ministry, all existing appointments for the second dose have been postponed as of Sunday, April 11, 2021, and the resumption of the second dose will be announced later.

The rescheduling decision was taken due to the shortage of international supplies of vaccines as manufacturers are struggling to cope with growing demand.

The ministry said it is keen to ensure that the largest part of the population has received the first dose of the vaccine, especially the high-risk groups, as this will have a “direct impact on reducing the severe cases and protecting public health”.

The decision also aims to boost the effectiveness of the second dose based on the research that vaccine manufacturers are undertaking to include the mutated types of the virus in their vaccines, the SPA report added.

So far, the kingdom has administered over 6.1 million doses of the vaccine, at a rate of 175,000 daily jabs, according to local media reports.

A total of 878 new Covid-19 cases were reported in Saudi on Saturday following 61,640 new laboratory tests, bringing the total number of infections to 397,636.

Among the 8,113 active cases, 914 are critical, while the health condition of the rest of the patients is stable, the Ministry of Health said.

The kingdom also registered 10 new deaths have been reported due to the virus, taking the tally of fatalities to 6,747.

Meanwhile, 578 Covid-19 patients have recovered, raising total recoveries to 382,776.

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