The Minister of Health, Khaled Ait Taleb, announced on Thursday 11 March in an interview with the Spanish agency EFE, the order of 1 million doses of Russian vaccine Sputnik V. It should be recalled that the National Technical and Scientific Committee on Immunization, which met this week, gave the green light to the use of Sputnik V and Johnson & Johnson vaccines. The Minister of Health said that the Russian vaccine will be delivered in two batches. The first batch will be delivered in March and the second batch this April.
However, the Minister said that the delivery dates will depend on Russia's commitments insofar as the Russian manufacturer is experiencing a very large influx of orders. Thus, Morocco has just added a third vaccine to its vaccination strategy. As announced by Kahled Ait Taleb, Morocco will soon acquire the American vaccine Johnson & Johnson.
With the specific aim of securing its supply, Morocco has opted to diversify its vaccines by seeking other suppliers. This measure will allow the Kingdom to avoid delays or supply problems. Morocco and Kenya have just approved the Russian vaccine, bringing to 48 the number of countries where the vaccine will be distributed, said Wednesday, March 10, the Russian sovereign fund RDIF, which manages the marketing of the serum abroad.
The Sputnik V vaccine is particularly coveted in the South, which has difficulty obtaining supplies. It offers simple logistics as it can be stored at a temperature between 2 and 8 degrees. Sputnik V is more than 91% effective against symptomatic forms of Covid-19, according to results published in The Lancet last February and validated by independent experts.
Approved in the U.S. by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Johnson & Johnson's U.S. vaccine is 86% effective against severe forms of the virus overall. It also has logistical advantages. It requires only one injection, unlike vaccines from Pfizer/BionTech, Moderna, AstraZeneca, or Sinopharm, which require two doses several weeks apart.
In addition, it can be stored for up to 3 months at standard refrigerator temperatures, making it easy to distribute. More than four million people have been vaccinated since the launch of the Covid-19 immunization campaign.
According to data from the Ministry of Health published on Wednesday, March 10, the cumulative total since the start of the campaign is 4,080,009 people. An additional 62,922 people have received the first dose of the vaccine against Covid-19 and 137,161 people have received their second dose, for a cumulative total of 854,274 people.