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More COVID vaccine shipments arrive as jab restrictions eased

(Photo: Jordan News)
(Photo: Jordan News)
AMMAN — By Monday, Jordan is due to have received 800,000 doses of Sinopharm COVID jabs amid easing of vaccine procedures for certain age groups.اضافة اعلان

Half a million Sinopharm vaccines arrived in Jordan on Friday from Dubai, and another 300,000 doses are expected to come directly from China on Monday.

This comes amid a new decision confirmed by Secretary-General of Epidemiological Affairs at the Ministry of Health Adel Al-Belbisi to allow those aged 50 and above to receive a COVID-19 vaccine without having to register on the government's online vaccination portal. This demographic will be able to forego the enrollment in an effort to encourage a substantial vaccination turnout.

Belbisi disclosed that now the ministry is looking mainly to those 50 and above and are holding off on easing the restrictions on younger age brackets until they witness a "good response."

"For those who are 50 and over, they may take the vaccine without having to be registered on the platform, or if they are registered, they don't have to wait for a message. We did this announcement to make it easier for them to come to the vaccination center, and get their vaccines," said Belbisi, in an interview with Jordan News over the phone.

However some citizens among the targeted group still show signs of hesitancy and fear towards the COVID vaccinations.

“I haven’t taken it because I read a lot of external reports on people getting sick and that the vaccine isn’t safe, and the government and the doctors trying to get people to take the vaccine are lying to us about what it does to our bodies. I was registered online but in the last 2 to 3 weeks, I have been in a group on telegram and there are people explaining the danger of taking it. So even if I can take it without being registered, I shall not. It is not just about life and death; these things are in God’s hands, but it is about the truth,” said Omar Al-Sardi, 62.

Saad Kharabsheh a former health minister and member of the epidemiological committee, agreed that the new rules are substantially significant to increasing vaccination coverage and improving the status of the epidemic.

"I was among the people who recommended that the ministry adopt this type of vaccination strategy," Kharabsheh said, in an interview with Jordan News.

Kharabsheh believes that the electronic vaccination registration platform could delay the chance of people securing a vaccine specifically in villages with more limited access to internet and communication devices than the major cities.

"There is no need to put certain obstacles in front of people. They have to go and register on the electronic platform, then wait for an appointment, then travel more than 10 or 20 kilometers to reach the vaccination center. So we must make the vaccines more accessible to each community," added Kharabsheh.

The doctor underlined the importance of reaching rural communities and remote areas. 

“There are health centers in most Jordanian villages. The cadres of these centers are well trained and equipped with the skills to give the vaccinations,” Kharabsheh added.

Jordan has hundreds of hospitals and health centers which can administer and deliver the vaccines for residents and citizens across the Kingdom.

Despite the fact that the World Health Organization (WHO) has recognized Sinopharm as an effective vaccine against COVID-19, some nations continue to show hesitancy towards the Chinese jab.

According to Reuters, Jordan currently ranks 60th in the world among countries with the highest number of doses administered as of June 25.

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