South Africa will start rolling out COVID-19 vaccines without requiring local regulatory approval, The Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday.
The health ministry said the country will in January receive one million doses of the vaccine developed by the University of Oxford and AstraZeneca from the Serum Institute of India.
A senior health-ministry official noted recently that no vaccine maker had filed the final paperwork for approval with the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA).
On Thursday, Health Minister Zweli Mkhize noted that the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine had already been approved in several countries, "as part of expediting the regulatory process, SAHPRA is applying reliance on that regulatory work."
Anban Pillay, a deputy director at the ministry, noted that Moderna remained in productive talks with South Africa on supplying its vaccine to the country and when it could do so.
Pillay added that expected Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson to complete their applications for registration with SAHPRA by the end of the month.
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