Abu Dhabi: Frontline staff at the Sharjah International Airport have started receiving their first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, the UAE Ministry of Health and Prevention announced on Tuesday.
The vaccine is being delivered in cooperation with the Sharjah Government, and is in line with national efforts to protect frontline workers from COVID-19. The vaccine was granted emergency approval last month for use by frontliners, including those working in aviation.
“The move comes as part of MoHAP’s efforts in cooperation with competent authorities to safeguard the health and safety of the frontline workers. Having identified the target groups, the dose, and the immunisation system, the vaccination is provided in accordance with evidence-based scientific rules, quality control procedures, and internationally approved protocols, which include the constant medical follow-up and the monitoring of any side effects that may occur,” said Mohammed Al Zarouni, director of Sharjah Medical District. “The confidence in the effectiveness and efficacy of the vaccine has increased after the frontline health workers got the first dose of coronavirus vaccine,” he added.
Phase III trials
The vaccine has been undergoing Phase III trials in the UAE since July. The inactivated vaccine was developed by Chinese pharmaceutical giant, Sinopharm China National Biotec Group, and it had already successful generated COVID-19 antibodies during the first two phases of testing in China. Till date, senior health officials have received the vaccine, and since emergency approval was granted, health professionals on the frontlines have also been vaccinated.
In addition, 31,000 residents have also volunteered for the Phase III trials in the UAE.