The U.S. has donated over 1.5 million doses of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine to Sri Lanka. These vaccines, delivered through COVAX, will save lives and increase COVID-19 vaccination coverage essential to ending the pandemic.
“These vaccines are given at no cost to the Government of Sri Lanka as part of America’s commitment to ending the global pandemic and our enduring partnership with the people of Sri Lanka. They will help Sri Lankans get back to work and to stay healthy, a gift we make in reflection of the long-standing friendship between the United States and Sri Lanka,” said Alaina Teplitz, the U.S. Ambassador to Sri Lanka and Maldives. “Our partnership with the Sri Lankan Ministry of Health, UNICEF, and other global COVAX partners to deliver these vaccines is critical to controlling the pandemic, slowing the emergence of new variants, and helping to restart the global economy.”
This vaccine delivery builds on the United States government’s ongoing leadership on global vaccination efforts as the world’s largest donor to COVAX. The 1.5 million doses delivered to the Sri Lankan Government today are part of the Biden-Harris Administration’s commitment to providing equitable global access to safe and effective vaccines. As noted by the White House, “Our vaccines do not come with strings attached. We are doing this with the singular objective of saving lives.”
The U.S. is sending more than 1.5 million doses of Moderna coronavirus vaccine to Sri Lanka, the latest shipment as US President Joe Biden begins sharing the American stockpile of shots. The doses arrived in Sri Lanka this morning at BIA and are being sent through Covax, the global vaccine procurement initiative intended to secure inoculations for low- and middle-income nations, according to a White House statement.
Health Minister Pavithra Wanniarachchi says that 750,000 of the Moderna shots are expected to be administered as the first dose, and the remaining 750,000 will be rolled out as the second dose after one-month period. The coronavirus jab developed in the United States delivered to the island nation under the COVAX facility.
Biden’s administration has pledged to ship at least 80 million doses — a mix of Moderna, Pfizer Inc. and Johnson & Johnson vaccines — out of the country this summer. The U.S. has sent them bit by bit as arrangements and transportation logistics fall into place. He had planned to send 80 million by the end of June, but missed that target.
The administration has separately ordered 500 million doses of Pfizer’s vaccine to donate abroad, beginning next month. The president has escalated international assistance on vaccinations as demand within the U.S. fades.
Moderna will be the 5th vaccine that Sri Lanka is administering. Sri Lanka has so far used AstraZeneca manufactured by the Serum Institute of India, Chinese Sinopharm Russian Sputnik V and the U.S. Pfizer–BioNTech in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.