Oman starts vaccinations with 1st batch of shots

Dubai: The Persian Gulf state of Oman has launched its COVID-19 inoculation campaign, with the sultanate’s health minister receiving the first dose of the Pfizer vaccine.

State-run media reported that the first batch of 15,600 doses was flown in industrial freezers to Muscat International Airport last week to vaccinate a priority group of older adults, health care workers and those with underlying health conditions starting on Sunday.

Another 28,000 doses of the vaccine by American drugmaker Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech are expected to arrive next month.

Oman says it aims to vaccinate 60% of its roughly 5 million people. The Health Ministry said the initial phase of the vaccination campaign would cover 20% of the population due to temporarily limited supply.

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The virus outbreak in Oman has infected over 128,000 people and killed more than 1,400. The country closed all official points of entry last week over fears of the fast-spreading new variant of the coronavirus. 

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