All new deliveries to France of AstraZeneca’s anti-covid vaccines are now shifted to donations to developing countries via the Covax device, the Ministry of Health said on July 20.
4.5 million doses in August
This week “approximately one million doses of AstraZeneca“must be delivered, which will be”100% signposted to Covax“, the device of international solidarity, added a representative of the Ministry of Economy and Finance. And 4.5 million doses of the Anglo-Swedish laboratory already ordered and expected in August will know the same destination.
Read also: Anti-covid vaccines: why a global plan is necessary
A vaccine neglected in France
Why are these doses given? The AstraZeneca vaccine, which uses viral vector technology, has been used in the vaccination campaign since early February. But its use was quickly restricted to those over 55 due to very rare but serious side effects.
These reports have led to a relative disaffection of the population for this vaccine, resulting in rates of use of doses significantly lower than those of RNA vaccines (Pfizer and Moderna).
135 beneficiary countries
As of July 12, the Covax system, which was supposed to guarantee equitable access to both rich and disadvantaged countries to anti-covid vaccines, had distributed more than 102 million doses of vaccines in 135 countries.
Since April, France has “sold nearly five million doses via Covax“, with”a gradual increase in donations“, underlined the representative of Bercy: 100,000 doses in April, 500,000 in May, 2.5 million in June and”nearly 3.5 million“expected in July. France also wishes”be able to give Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson vaccines before the end of the summer“, he added.