Ministry of Health increases interval between doses of Covishield vaccine to 90 days - Liashko
The Ministry of Health has extended the interval between doses of COVID-19 Covishield vaccine to 90 days, minor changes will be made to the national vaccination plan.
As chief sanitary doctor, Deputy Minister of Health Viktor Liashko told reporters, the changes were made on the recommendations of the National Technical Group of Experts on Immunoprophylaxis.
Liashko said that according to the results of clinical studies and vaccination practice, the intervals between the first and second vaccine doses were also recommended to be increased to 12 weeks by NTGEI of Canada, Germany, and France.
"Taking into account the position of the NTGEI and the results of international studies, the operational headquarters of the Ministry of Health decided that in order to achieve the maximum level of immune protection when using the vaccine from Oxford/AstraZeneca (CoviShield) produced by Serum Institute of India and SK Bioscience, it is advisable to increase the initial interval between doses. This does not contradict the manufacturer's instructions, which provides for such an interval within 4-12 weeks," Liashko said.
At the same time, he said that the implementation of this recommendation of the NTGEI will require the Ministry of Health to slightly adjust the approaches to the vaccination campaign at the first stages and make changes to the national vaccination plan.
"Already today, March 17, a conference call with the regions is planned to clarify the details of the implementation of this recommendation," Liashko said.
As reported, currently in Ukraine, vaccination against COVID-19 is carried out with the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine, which is produced at the facilities of the Serum Institute (India) and has the local (trade) name of Covishield. The vaccine is supplied to Ukraine in ten-dose vials. After opening the vial, the vaccine must be used within six hours.
As of Wednesday morning, 71,922 people were vaccinated with the first dose of CoviShield vaccine in Ukraine.