By: The Kabul Times
KABUL: The U.S. plans to give Afghanistan three million doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine as the country is facing a surge of coronavirus cases, a senior US administration official said.
The official said the doses could be sent as early as next week along with other supplies such as oxygen.
“As we continue to undertake our security transition, Afghanistan has experienced a significant COVID outbreak of the Delta variant, and we will be providing 3 million doses of Johnson & Johnson vaccine to the people of Afghanistan to be shipped as soon as next week, pending logistics,” White House deputy press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre told reporters. “We are also providing oxygen and other supplies.”
Afghanistan is short on oxygen and vaccines it needs to combat the surge of coronavirus cases happening in the country. The gravity of the surge is unclear as testing has been limited in the country.
Official statistics showed 85 people died daily from the virus this past week, but the actual tally could be much higher, according to the Journal.
Health ministry spokesman Ghulam Dastigir said last week the country was looking to install more oxygen plants as citizens are begging for more oxygen for loved ones who are infected.
Along with limited oxygen, the country has vaccinated only 1 percent of its population with the country only having a few doses of the Chinese Sinopharm vaccine or the AstraZeneca vaccine from India.
The increased case rate caused the U.S. embassy in the country to be put under lockdown with one person dying from the virus and several having to be medevacked out of the facility.