Colombo, Mar 4: Sri Lanka's drug regulatory body has approved the Russian Sputnik V vaccine as the second available for use in the Indian Ocean island nation.
The state minister overseeing pharmaceutical products, Channa Jayasumana, said Sri Lanka has requested doses from Russia's Gamaleya Research Institute and was awaiting confirmation of the amount it would get.
Sri Lanka already is administering the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine manufactured by the Serum Institute in India. It received 1 million doses, half donated and half purchased from the institute.
Starting in January with frontline health workers, Sri Lanka has given the vaccine to more than 550,000 people.
It plans to purchase 10 million Oxford-AstraZeneca doses for USD 52.5 million from the Serum Institute, and it has decided to enter into an agreement with the AstraZeneca Institute in Britain to buy 3.5 million more.
Sri Lanka has counted 84,225 cases of COVID-19 with 484 fatalities. - AP