Shortage of special syringe for Pfizer will affect millions of vaccinations in Japan

WION Web Team
New Delhi, Delhi, India Published: Feb 10, 2021, 04:00 PM(IST)

Coronavirus in Japan (representative image). Photograph:( Twitter )

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Norihisa Tamura, country's health minister said the normal syringes that are used will unable to extract the final dose from a vial, implying about 60 million people will be vaccinated

Millions of people in Japan will not able to receive Pfizer- BioNTech's vaccine to treat coronavirus as planned as special syringes used to give the dose remains short of supply. 

Japan has ordered 144 million shots of Pfizer vaccine to immune 72 million doses, considering that each vial contained six doses. 

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Norihisa Tamura, country's health minister said the normal syringes that are used will unable to extract the final dose from a vial, implying about 60 million people will be vaccinated. 

Also read | South Africa to proceed with planned phase 1 vaccination using J&J

"The syringes used in Japan can only draw five doses," Tamura was quoted as saying by news agency Kyodo. 

"We will use all the syringes we have that can draw six doses, but it will, of course, not be enough as more shots are administered."

The government is urging manufacturers to scale up the production of special "dead space" syringe so that full capacity of the vial can be exploited. 

Despite the setback, Japan will be beginning its vaccination drive next week, Japanese prime minister has said. 

"When we have confirmed the vaccine's efficacy and safety, we will start vaccination by the middle of next week," Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga said.

The problem of special syringe shortage is encountered not just by Japan, but European Union nations and the US are also facing a similar issue. 
 

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