Through the Ministry of Civil Affairs of Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH), since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, 2.990.340 doses of AstraZeneca, BioNTech Pfizer, Sinovac, Sinopharm and Moderna vaccines have been provided.
Based on the analysis of health experts, two sub-variants of omicron strain BA.4 and BA.5 are spreading rapidly and were added to the monitoring list of the World Health Organization (WHO) in March this year. Consequently, the United States (U.S.) government has approved new vaccines to protect against the latest variants of the omicron strain.
From the Ministry of Civil Affairs of BiH, when asked whether the modified booster doses will arrive on time for the BiHcitizens, told agency Fena that if and when they receive information that it is possible to obtain vaccines as part of the COVAX and EU4Health mechanisms, further action will be based on the requirements of the competent health authorities.
Namely, the Ministry of Civil Affairs of BiH, headed by Minister Ankica Gudeljevic, acts in accordance with the requirements of the competent entity ministries of health and ministry of health of Brcko District of BiH.
”The Ministry of Civil Affairs of BiH coordinates COVAX and EU4Health vaccine procurement mechanisms, through which until now it was not possible to procure the mentioned vaccines, given that COVAX does not have a signed contract with the manufacturers of vaccines against the omicron variant of the coronavirus, nor was the purchase of the mentioned vaccines offered through the EU4Health mechanism,” they pointed out are from that ministry.
Also, the Ministry of Civil Affairs of BiH provides technical assistance within the framework of the implementation of the Joint Procurement Agreement (JPA).
The members of the Management Board, responsible for the implementation of the activities, are representatives of the entity appointed by the BiH Presidency, through which the procurement of medicines against the infectious disease COVID-19, personal protective equipment and materials, and equipment for vaccination was made possible.
”The Ministry of Civil Affairs of BiH does not have information that the procurement of vaccines against the omicron variant of the coronavirus is possible within the framework of the aforementioned Agreement, and the Ministry’s actions, upon receiving the information, will be based on the requirements of the competent entity ministries of health and Brcko District of BiH,” it was emphasized from the BiH Ministry of Civil Affairs.
In the Budget of BiH, as they state, funds in the total amount of 2.000.000 BAM are provided for the provision of funds for the payment of costs incurred as part of the fulfillment of obligations from the Agreement on the procurement of vaccines with the Global Alliance for Vaccines (GAVI) against the disease COVID- 19 through the COVAX mechanism.
These funds are also intended for specific Contracts within the Agreement on the Joint Procurement of Health Countermeasures (JPA), as well as other future contractual arrangements regarding the procurement of health countermeasures against COVID-19, which relate to the delivery, import, distribution of vaccines and health countermeasures. That is, the payment of organization, transport, inspection, insurance and other costs in the producer’s country, as well as the payment of storage, forwarding, insurance, transport and quality assurance costs in BiH.
Entity institutions and the Brcko District of BiH are responsible for the process of vaccination, as well as the destruction of unused vaccines, the BiH Ministry of Civil Affairs reminds.