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Cuba begins immunization with its own COVID19 vaccines

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Cuba has begun a mass Covid-19 vaccination drive using two homegrown shots before they have full regulatory approval, after declaring a health emergency as cases surge.

The government says it aims at vaccinating the entire adult population with its Abdala and Soberana TWO shots.

The programme began in Havana on Wednesday for residents aged 60 years or older, with frontline workers in other provinces also receiving the vaccines.

Public Health Minister José Angel Portal Miranda, says he expects full approval for both vaccines in June but that Cuban law allows the step to be bypassed in an emergency.

More than 300,000 Cubans have been vaccinated to date, including trial participants and frontline workers.

Cuban Health Authorities say both shots have proved safe and highly effective, but have not released trial data.

Cuba opted not to join the World Health Organization-backed Covax vaccine procurement facility or accept jabs from allies such as Russia and China.

The island nation has been manufacturing vaccines for years and authorities cite long experience and a policy of not depending on others as behind its decision.

SourceBBC

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