The Health Ministry has identified key groups that will be prioritized when providing the COVID-19 vaccine,Minister Pavithra Wanniarachchi told Parliament yesterday(07th Jan).
- Health Workers – 155,000 (0.68%)
- Tri-forces & Police – 127,500 (0.56)
- People above 60 years – 3,159,800 (14%)
- People dealing with migrant workers – 225,700 (1%)
- People between the age of 18-59 with illnesses – 3,227,510 (14.3%)
- People between the age of 40 to 59 – 3,114,660 (13.8%)
She said front line healthcare workers amounting to 155,000 or 0.68% of the population will be the first batch to receive the vaccination.
Thereafter, nearly 127,500 tri-forces personnel and Police officers will receive the vaccine.
Around 3,159,800 persons above the age of 60 will receive the vaccine next, while 225,700 persons including those dealing with repatriated Sri Lankan migrant workers and other such key sectors will also receive the vaccine.
Minister Wanniarachchi further said 3,227,510 persons between the age of 18-59 with illnesses, and 3,114,660 individuals between the age of 40-59 without illnesses will receive the vaccine.
However, children below the age of 18 and pregnant women amounting to nearly 35% of the population will not receive the vaccine as it is not recommended to vaccinate them. The Health Minister said the Government’s National Deployment of Vaccination Plan (NDVP) is 60% complete at present.
The NDVP will be fully completed and submitted to the World Health Organization’s COVAX facility by 12 January, 2021. Minister Wanniarachchi further informed Parliament that the Government will take necessary measures to secure the Pfizer Covid vaccine if it is distributed by the World Health Organization.
She said the US is to provide US$370,000 as aid to acquire cold containers to preserve the COVID vaccines obtained by Sri Lanka.
The Health Minister added that the Asian Development Bank is also set to provide a grant of US$ 5 million to assist with regard to the procurement of COVID-19 vaccines.