The Kenyan public will soon be able to access the Sputnik V jab after the Pharmacy and Poisons Board (PPB) gave Emergency Use Approval for the Russian-made COVID-19 vaccine.
In a statement Wednesday, the Poisons board said it has also given emergency use authorization for the AstraZeneca vaccine to a private pharmacy.
“PBB Kenya has given Emergency Use Authorization to AstraZeneca vaccine and the Sputnik V vaccine after a successful evaluation process. This is not a registration.”
“The application for Emergency Use Authorization of Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine has been approved after it met all requirements,” the board said.
PBB assured that in reviewing the Sputnik V vaccine, it had considered all aspects of quality, safety, and efficacy and arrived at the conclusion that it is wholesomely safe.
“The Board continues to review the safety of all authorized products in the market,” it said.
According to sources at PBB, several other vaccine manufacturers have expressed interest but are yet to make formal application for consideration.
“Chinese vaccines and Johnson & Johnson have indicated interest but we are yet to receive their applications, we will only deal with applications we receive,” the source told the Standard.
The Pharmacy and Poisons Board is currently evaluating the Pfizer and Sinovac vaccines in an effort to give Emergency Use Authorisation.
Sputnik V vaccine, which has an efficacy level of about 92 percent, will reportedly be sold at Sh5, 500 a dose hence Sh11, 000 for the two jabs which will be administered 21 days apart.
Sputnik V is developed by Russia’s Gamaleya National Centre of Epidemiology and Microbiology.
Russia has developed three vaccines — Sputnik V, EpiVacCorona and CoviVac. Russian President Vladimir Putin received a coronavirus shot on Tuesday but the Kremlin declined to disclose which one, saying it is one of three Russian-made.
Currently, Kenya is administering the AstraZeneca vaccine which has an efficacy of 62 percent.
UPDATE: The Ministry of Health(MoH) on Wednesday said the Sputnik V vaccine has not yet been approved for use in Kenya.
Ministry’s Chief Administrative Secretary Mercy Mwangangi said even though the Russian vaccine shipment is already in the country, it has not been cleared for use in inoculating Kenyans.
“The vaccine (Sputnik V) has not received all the necessary regulatory approval for use in the country,” Mwangangi said.
“Such a vaccine must be registered for emergency use locally by our own Pharmacy and Poisons Board. There is no current pharmacy or hospital in the country that has the Sputnik V vaccine. It is actually illegal for a facility to advertise and to say that it has that commodity,” she added.