Turkey expects to receive the first shipment of the Russian Sputnik V COVID-19 vaccine in May, the country’s health minister said on Friday.
“Turkey has so far administered almost 23 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine, and we currently have 6 million doses still available,” Fahrettin Koca said at a press conference in the Mediterranean province.
The 6 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines include Sinovac and BioNTech vaccines, according to Koca.
Turkey also recently announced that the time between the two doses of the BioNtech vaccine had been extended to six to eight weeks.
Commenting on the case, Koca said the decision of the Coronavirus Scientific Committee was “misunderstood.”
“First and foremost, this decision is scientific, made by examining concrete evidence-based data and based on scientific reasons,” he added.
Koca recalls that the country approved the emergency use of the Sputnik V vaccine on Friday, saying that Turkey expects to receive 50 million doses of the vaccine over a six-month period and the first shipment to be received in May.
“Administration of this vaccine will begin in the country as soon as possible,” he added.
The Turkish Minister said that the supply of COVID-19 vaccines will be much more frequent in June, and said: “We are determined to vaccinate our citizens from the age of 40 and upwards by June. We aim to vaccinate all 18 years and older from this summer. ”
During the last 17-day lock-in, which started in Turkey on Thursday, Koca said that the inhabitants are adapting to the “tightened measures, we are very pleased with this situation.”
Since the launch of the COVID-19 mass vaccination campaign in mid-January, Turkey has administered over 22.8 million doses. More than 13.7 million people have received their first doses, while 9.1 million have been fully vaccinated.