COVID Watch | 9th February 2021

CanSinoBIO Phase III clinical trials in Pakistan record an efficacy of 74.8% in protecting against COVID-19 symptoms and 100% protection against developing severe complications. WHO, DRAP and EPI conduct workshop on monitoring 'adverse events' following COVID-19 immunization. Sindh to purchase 20 million vaccine doses from China.


CanSinoBIO vaccine more effective for Pakistanis

Citing data published in a report by the Independent Data Monitoring Committee (IDMC), Special Assistant to the Prime Minister (SAPM) on Health Dr. Faisal Sultan stated that CanSinoBIO’s vaccine recorded an efficacy of 74.8 percent in preventing symptoms during Phase III clinical trials in Pakistan. This is in contrast to an effectiveness of 65.7 percent reported for tests in other countries.

Dr. Sultan further stated that the vaccine showed 100 percent results in preventing severe complications as a result of the novel coronavirus disease in Pakistan, as compared to 90.98 percent for populations in other test countries. The report also did not mention any serious safety concerns.

Following the IDMC publication, CanSinoBIO has announced it will now progress with advancing its Phase-III trials.

Training on monitoring post-vaccination ‘adverse events’

The World Health Organization (WHO), the Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan (DRAP) and the federal and provincial Expanded Programme on Immunization (EPI) on Monday, February 8, held a training workshop on ‘Monitoring of adverse events following immunisation of COVID-19 vaccines’ to determine or adverse outcomes after inoculating individuals.

Participants were informed that focal persons appointed to 582 adult vaccination counters (AVCs) in health units across the country will collect and submit daily data on adverse events to district health officers, who will then compile the data into weekly reports EPI Management Information System (EPI-MIS). Punjab and Sindh however will share data compiled on spreadsheets as as the system has yet to be rolled out.

Sindh to purchase 20 million vaccines from China

Following a meeting with the Chinese Consul General Li Bijian, Sindh Health Minister Dr. Azra Pechuho on Monday announced that the provincial government will purchase 20 million vaccine vials from China, and will send healthcare workers from Sindh to study traditional Chinese medicine. Moreover, the Chinese Consul assured Sindh of providing health technologies. So far, Sindh has managed to inoculate some 17,000 healthcare workers with free Sinopharm vaccines donated by China.