Sputnik V vaccine only authorised for emergency use - Mwangangi

Distributors warned against marketing vaccine, which hasn't received market authorisation.

In Summary

• Covid-19 task force chairman  Dr Alfred Akwala, however, said that the vaccine has not received market authorisation.

• “You cannot market a product that is not yet approved for commercial use," he said.

Russia's "Sputnik-V" vaccine against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
Russia's "Sputnik-V" vaccine against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
Image: REUTERS

The Ministry of Health has said that the Russian coronavirus vaccine Sputnik V has been authorised for emergency use, adding it is in the country legally.

In a press briefing from the Afya House on Wednesday, Health CAS Mercy Mwangangi said that the ministry will communicate on the facilities that will be offering the vaccine.

“The vaccine has received emergency use authorization by the Pharmacy and Poisons Board. We have been able to engage the distributors to identify the facilities that will be able to offer this vaccine,” Mwangangi said.

Covid-19 task force chairman  Dr Alfred Akwala, however, said that the vaccine has not received market authorisation.

“You cannot market a product that is not yet approved for commercial use. This morning, the task force met and the Pharmacy and Poisons Board informed us that they have summoned the distributors of this particular vaccine and they have actually given them a warning in writing and if that kind of marketing continues, they will be in contravention of PPB rules and its emergency use can be withdrawn,” Akwala said.

Akwala said that as a taskforce, they have set recommendations that must be met by any vaccine that will arrive in the country.

Among the recommendation is that it must be approved by the World Health Organisation, and must have local registration by PPB.

He added that due to the shortage of the vaccine, the firms that have submitted their dossier to WHO about its vaccine and are still under review can be allowed into the country.

Also, the vaccines will be required to share badge numbers in advance to PPB before the issuance of the permit.

 “All the private sector vaccine will have to report through the ChanjoKE system which also monitors the side effects so that we might know which vaccine, which badge number and who has been vaccinated.”

Mwangangi has also said that those who had tested positive for the virus and want to take the jab can only do so after a period of one month, which must also be advised by the clinicians.

"After one month of recovery, it may be safe but only after the clinician has cleared you and has determined that you are eligible to get Covid vaccine ."