To purchase a COVID-19 vaccine through the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI), the authorities of Kazakhstan will have to allocate 9.037–18.075 billion tenge from the budget (about $21.6 million–$43.2 million), excluding transportation costs. That’s what the official representative of the Ministry of Healthcare of Kazakhstan, Bagdat Kozhakhmetov, said on Facebook.
A single vaccine’s cost, according to the GAVI’s estimates, will vary from $10 to $20, which at the current dollar-tenge exchange rate is 4,142 to 8,284 tenge.
As Kozhakhmetov states, the number of citizens subject to free vaccination in Kazakhstan is 2,182,000 people, or 11.5% of the country’s total population. This number includes people with health conditions who are at higher risk from coronavirus: people over 65 years old, with cardiovascular disease, diabetes, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, as well as medical workers.
“The Ministry of Healthcare is considering the possibility to up the number of free vaccine recipients to 20% and include children and adults who are monitored for chronic diseases, children and staff of closed institutions, and other categories of the population,” noted the Ministry representative.
It was revealed that starting September, the Research Institute for Biologic Safety Problems will conduct clinical trials of a Kazakhstani vaccine on 244 volunteers.
It should be noted that China has launched clinical trials of a COVID-19 vaccine on humans. One hundred forty-four people are participating in trials of the vaccine developed by employees of the Chinese company Fosun Pharma and the German pharmaceutical group BioNTech. They are to receive two doses of the vaccine 21 days apart. Meanwhile, 72 people have already received the first dose. At first, the vaccine will be tested on people aged 18–55, then on older people.