The Director of the Vaccinations Department, “Abdul Basset Smeo,” said in a statement Arraed on Wednesday, that they had not yet obtained approval from the Cabinet to supply the influenza vaccine, explaining that the Audit Bureau requested the government’s approval to supply the vaccine in advance.
“Smeo” added that they set the quantity of the vaccine at 2 million doses, then the Audit Bureau, the Prime Ministry and the Central Bank of Libya reduced it to 1.2 million doses, and it was reduced again to 700,000 doses, noting that the government did not even agree to supply 700,000 doses.
And “Smeo” indicated that this is the first year in which the supply of the vaccine was not approved, hoping that the prime minister would speed up approval; Because the winter season is almost over and the vaccine has not yet been provided.
“Smeo” explained that vaccination campaigns often start in October and November (and this is the appropriate time to give the vaccine), indicating that it can be given even in the months of December, January and February.
“Smeo” stressed that contracting to supply the vaccine is within the competence of the supply system or a committee assigned by the Ministry of Health or the Cabinet, and the approvals are made by the Audit Bureau, the Central Bank of Libya, the Ministry of Health and the Prime Minister.
And “Smeo” added that not taking the vaccine will expose pregnant women, the elderly, those who suffer from chronic diseases, and health workers to lung infections and several problems that may lead to death, especially if the Coronavirus and influenza combine, the consequences will be worse.
In a related context, “Smeo” said that the “Pfizer” vaccine is available, with 1.4 million doses, and the “Sinopharm” vaccine 3 million doses, and it is expected that shipments of the “AstraZeneca” vaccine and another shipment of “Pfizer” have arrived.
And “Smeo” indicated that there is a lack of demand for vaccinations, in light of the global spread of the mutant “Omicron” and expectations that it will enter the country at any moment, pointing out that there are a number of operators that exist to detect this mutant “if it enters.”