1054 GMT May 13, 2021
Iran will vaccinate all people above 18 in the country against COVID-19 by the end of the fall, announced the Health Ministry.
The Health Ministry spokeswoman Sima Sadat Lari told a daily press conference on Wednesday the process of vaccination against the disease in the country has been accelerated following the delivery of Iran’s share of the COVID-19 Vaccines Global Access (COVAX) program, IRNA reported.
She added 621,882 doses of COVID-19 vaccines have so far been given to 480,646 people in Iran in two phases, expressing hope that all members of the country’s medical staff as well as those wounded in action would receive the jab by April 25.
Lari described as a global challenge the shortage of COVID-19 vaccines, expressing satisfaction with the increased pace of vaccination in Iran.
She added mass production of two homemade vaccines are expected to begin by June 22.
The spokeswoman also said all vaccines to be made available in the country’s health and treatment network will be given to people free of charge and according to the Health Ministry’s priority list.
Providing Iran’s COVID-19 statistics during the 24-hour period to Wednesday, Lari put the number of the newly detected cases at 24,886.
She noted that the total number of the people testing positive for the coronavirus in the country has surpassed 2,311,800.
The disease claimed 388 lives over the past 24 hours, bringing the overall COVID-19 death toll in Iran since the outbreak of the pandemic in the country in late February 2020 to 67,913, Lari added.
More than 1,823,950 patients have so far either recovered from the disease or been discharged from hospitals across Iran, she said.
Among those currently undergoing treatment in the country’s medical centers, 4,991 are in critical conditions, the spokeswoman regretted.
She said more than 14.73 million coronavirus diagnostic tests have so far been carried out in Iran.
Earlier, the Health Ministry announced that 257 cities in the country are coded red (very high-risk), while 129 cities are categorized as orange (high-risk), adding that based on a decision by the National Task Force for Fighting the Coronavirus, travel to and from these cities is prohibited.
It put the number of the country’s yellow (medium-risk) and blue (low-risk) cities at 51 and 11, respectively.
All Iranian cities located in the red and orange zones are under a two-week partial lockdown.
The number of people infected with COVID-19 across the world has surpassed 143 million, with the death toll exceeding 3.06 million.
Sixth Sputnik V shipment
In the meantime, the sixth batch of Russia’s Sputnik V COVID-19 vaccines, comprising 100,000 doses of the jab, was handed over to the Iranian Embassy in Moscow on Wednesday and will be in Tehran today, according to iribnews.ir.
The fifth vaccine shipment had been delivered from Russia to Iran two weeks ago. The vaccines will be transferred to Tehran on board a Mahan Air flight.
In a tweeter post last Thursday, Iran’s Ambassador to Russia Kazem Jalali said the country finalized a contract to import 60 million doses of Sputnik V vaccine within the coming months, Tasnim News Agency reported.
He added the doses will be sufficient for vaccinating 30 million people.
The ambassador noted that the Iranian Embassy in Moscow doubled efforts and managed to finalize the contract after intensive negotiations with the Russian government amid concerns over a surge in the coronavirus pandemic in Iran.
Iran will begin to import the consignments of vaccines from June, the envoy added.