Singapore grants approval for Pfizer’s Covid-19 vaccine candidate

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Singapore has granted approval for the Coronavirus vaccine developed by Pfizer-BioNTech and is anticipating to receive the vaccine shots by the end of 2020, said Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Monday. He further added about his plan to be one of the early vaccine recipients.

Lee said Singapore, with the population of 5.7 million people is anticipating to have adequate vaccines for everyone till the third quarter of 2021 and will be completely free of cost for the citizens as well as long-term residents.

Lee further said that vaccination is going to be voluntary, however, Lee and other government officials will be involved in it as early participants post healthcare workers, frontline workers, the elderly and the vulnerable people.

In a national broadcast, Lee revealed, “My colleagues and I, including the older ones, will be getting ourselves vaccinated early. This is to show you, especially seniors like me, that we believe the vaccines are safe.”

The authorities further revealed about the advanced purchase agreements signed by Singapore and that early down-payments are already done on the potentially successful vaccine candidates which comprises of the vaccines developed by Moderna and Sinovac, keeping aside over $1 billion for shots.

Kenneth Mak, the health ministry’s director of medical services said to the media, “We have acquired sufficient doses of the vaccines for all Singaporeans and long-term residents.”

Very few countries, which includes the United States, Canada and Bahrain have granted approval to Pfizer Inc and BioNTech SE vaccine. Britain, has scheduled for a mass inoculation programme and the United States is also planing for the same.

Lee said, “Our situation is now stable.. Now that vaccines are becoming available, we can see light at the end of the tunnel.”

Over a period of last 2 months, Singapore has recorded very few cases of the novel Covid-19. From over 58,000 cases in Singapore, as many as 29 people have lost their lives, which is one of the lowest death records in the world. Overall, more than 70 million people have been infected with the Coronavirus disease in the world, with 1.61 million deaths.

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