Solomon Islands poised to deploy Chinese vaccines after WHO approval

T he Solomon Islands government is preparing to use a Chinese-made COVID-19 vaccine to inoculate its citizens following its approval by the World Health Organisation.

The country already has 50,000 doses of the Sinopharm vaccine but had been waiting on the WHO's emergency approval, which was given last week.

Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare said he was “extremely happy” with the WHO's decision.

“With this approval the National Drugs, Medicines and Therapeutics Committee will now consider the approval of the Sinopharm vaccine,” he said.

Sogavare said he would announce details of the vaccine rollout next week.

There have been questions about Sinopharm's efficacy in the past but ANU infectious diseases expert Professor Peter Collignon said data from countries where the vaccine is already in use indicates it works.

“There were enough people studied in a lot of these other countries that it appears that it works," he said.

“The fact that WHO has approved it means that if you can't get hold of other vaccines, that is the one to use,” he said.


Photo supplied Chinese Embassy/Xinhua News