02 August 2022 | News
To finance the purchase of at least 1.28 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines
image credit- ADB
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved a $10 million loan to help the Government of Bhutan purchase safe and effective vaccines against COVID-19. The project is part of ADB’s $9 billion Asia Pacific Vaccine Access Facility (APVAX) launched in December 2020 to offer vaccine-related support to ADB developing member countries.
The ADB loan will finance the purchase of at least 1.28 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines. It will support Bhutan to achieve its 100 per cent vaccine coverage target by 2024. Vaccines financed by ADB will immunize at least 90 per cent of children aged 5–11 to cover the initial two-dose schedule and the additional doses for the entire eligible population.
ADB will also administer a $3 million grant from the Japan Fund for Prosperous and Resilient Asia and the Pacific (JFPR) to help improve access to primary health care services, including COVID-19 vaccination and routine immunization, in remote areas through the purchase and deployment of mobile medical unit vehicles. Medical personnel will be trained to help strengthen outreach health care service delivery and biomedical waste management. In addition, the JFPR grant will help the government maintain the current level of COVID-19 disease surveillance capacity to address new COVID-19 variants and ensure the safety of health care personnel involved in providing COVID-19 care by providing medical and laboratory equipment and supplies, test kits, reagents, and personal protective equipment.