Health Care Sector

Cuba’s Abdala Vaccine Arrives in Venezuela

A big victory for the made-in-Cuba Abdala. Now Venezuela is receiving shipments.

Venezuela’s Vice President Delcy Rodriguez, announced the nation has received the first shipment of Cuba’s Abdala vaccine. 

In a televised broadcast of the event, Rodriguez said, “I have the honor to share the arrival of these doses of the Abdala vaccine, which, just a few days ago, was presented to humanity with an efficacy and efficiency of more than 92 percent.”

In April, Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro announced the country had signed a deal to produce 2 million doses of the Abdala each month. 

By May, Venezuela said the country began clinical trials of the Abdala and had plans to produce enough jabs to vaccinate 4 million people. 

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At present, Cuba’s regulatory authority, CECMED, is evaluating the file submitted by the Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (CIGB), to obtain authorization of the Abdala. The authorization will trigger massive vaccination in Cuba and countries with collaboration agreements. 

If the Cuban vaccines are approved, vaccination on the island will speed up. Many countries including Argentina, Mexico, Vietnam, and Iran, have expressed an interest in purchasing the country’s first made-in-Cuba Covid vaccine. 

The ABDALA has completed Phase III trials showing the efficacy of 92.28%, placing it in third place globally for its effectiveness. 

It is difficult to determine the exact vaccine effectiveness when respected journalism is presenting opposite positions on global vaccines. 

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For example, the New York Times reported in January that Novovax is not as effective against the fast-spreading South African variant. While The Atlantic wrote that Novovax is the best.

The Cuban Soberana 02 vaccine has demonstrated a 62% efficiency in a two-dose scheme. A third dose is required. The Finlay Vaccine Institute, developers of Soberana 02, announced they will submit their file to (CECMED) for approval for emergency use. The Institute expects to have an efficiency result of between 85 and 95% after the third dose. 

Cuba has three other studies of vaccines under development for the recovered segments of the disease, children, and others. 

It is significant under what circumstances the island has had to combat the COVID pandemic at a time that restrictions by the U.S. have escalated. 

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Cuba is currently the country with the highest daily per capita vaccination rate in the world. Cuba intends to vaccinate 70% of its population by August and the total population by the end of 2021. 

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