Muscat: Oman marked the beginning of the end of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic that affected people and nations equally beyond borders when it received its first batch of the vaccine on Thursday [December 24].
While Oman proudly boasts of becoming one of the early adopters of what is being touted as the “miracle” (Pfizer-BioNTech) vaccine, it has also overcome logistical challenges and consignment restrictions owing to overdemand.
The vaccine, as per the Ministry of Health, must be cooled significantly and appropriately to ensure its efficacy. Shipped from “the country of origin” (not revealed by the Ministry at the time of publishing), the vaccine arrived in Oman in ultra-low thermal fridges.
These specially-designed fridges have been developed to keep the vaccine at a temperature of minus-80-degrees-Celsius and travel long distances as they arrive in the Sultanate.
Oman, as stated by the Ministry, has a plan in place to tackle any logistical challenges it may face in the coming months.
While 15,600 doses of the vaccine arrived in Oman last week, an additional 28,000 doses are expected to arrive in Oman early in January 2021.
The vaccine – which is mass-produced by US firm Pfizer in cooperation with German firm BioNTech – is aimed to generate enough antibodies in the body to assist in warding off the COVID-19 virus.
It is a two-dose vaccine that is administered with 21-day intervals.
The Ministry has reportedly initiated an intensive media plan to raise public awareness and keep the population informed, while at the same time refuting any rumours and misrepresentations of the vaccine.