On Wednesday, the BioCubaFarma President Eduardo Martinez announced that Cuba will carry out the necessary procedures for the World Health Organization (WHO) to qualify the Sovereign 02, Abdala, and Sovereign Plus vaccines as suitable products for the emergency treatment of COVID-19 cases.
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The domestic use of these vaccines was authorized by the Cuban Center for State Control of Medicines, Equipment, and Medical Devices (CECMED), which is a public institution whose capabilities and scientific integrity have been officially recognized by the WHO.
"BioCubaFarma has kept Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) and WHO experts updated on the results achieved in the clinical trials of these vaccines," Martinez stated. Once the Cuban vaccines obtain the WHO emergency use authorization, they could be acquired by the COVAX facility for distribution in the countries that benefit from this multilateral mechanism.
Martinez stressed that his organization had positive scientific researching experiences with PAHO and WHO experts when certificating Cuba’s Hepatitis B Heberbiovac HB vaccine and QuimiHib vaccine, which prevents meningitis, pneumonia, and arthritis.
While the Abdala vaccine requires three doses to produce an efficient immunization, Sovereign 02 needs two doses and reinforcement of Sovereign Plus, which is the only COVID-19 vaccine in the world designed for disease convalescents.
Cuban scientists have been testing the effectiveness of Sovereign 02 and Abdala vaccine in the pediatric population located in Camaguey and La Habana provinces. Given that favorable results have been obtained, the authorities will begin vaccinating people older than two years from September.
As of Aug. 30, 3,792,398 Cubans had been fully immunized against COVID-19 with a locally-produced coronavirus vaccine. Health authorities’ purpose is to get 100 percent of the population vaccinated in December.
"Although vaccination is a fundamental pillar in the fight against COVID-19, vaccinated people shall continue to ensure preventive sanitary measures since they can be asymptomatic carriers of the disease," said Maria Soto, the director of the Primary Health Care Department at the Health Ministry (MINSAP).
As of Sept. 2, Cuba had reported 659,464 COVID-19 cases and 5,377 related deaths, 74 of which were reported in the last 24 hours.