Many still uncertain about AstraZeneca as their second dose

Malawi's Health Minister Khumbize Chiponda closed the incineration chamber where the vaccines were destroyed

As 55,000 of the remaining doses are set to expire at the end of May, pharmacies said they can respond quickly.

Malawi's Health Minister Khumbize Kandodo Chiponda (centre) lifts out a pack of expired Covid-19 Astra Zeneca from a transit box at an official ceremony at a pharmaceutical incinerator where the vaccines are to be destroyed at Kamuzu Central Hospital in Lilongwe.

"If they send it on the 24th, by the 26th we will get it done", Fawaz said. "Historically under the expanded immunisation program of Malawi no expired vaccine has ever been used".

Malawi virologist Gama Bandawe says mistrust of vaccines has played a role in the country being unable to use all the supplies it has received.

"Offering the protection of the vaccine to youth aged 12 and over is a significant milestone in Ontario's fight against COVID-19", the release said.

However, the Malawian government said it would not give expired vaccines to its citizens.

CITF said 559,200 doses of the AstraZeneca type vaccines and the 500,000 CoronaVac type from the Sinovac Life Sciences Co Ltd arrived at 7.50am.

The health minister thanked WHO, the African Union and India for donating the vaccines.

Kato also said he will launch a team within the Cabinet Secretariat to consider ways, in coordination with the health and foreign ministries, to certify and allow people who have been inoculated against COVID-19 to travel internationally.

The country, with a population of 38 million, has administered more than 20 million vaccine doses. The government has not said where it will get more vaccines.

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To complicate matters further, the country suspended its Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine rollout in mid-March, amid safety concerns, and resumed it on only 19 April - more than a month later. The WHO initially asked them to hold onto the vaccines until it could establish whether they could be still be used.

The decision to stop the use of AstraZeneca for first shots due to worries over blood clots was creating worries among people who had already received their first dose.

"We had stopped observation of proper storage mechanisms and the vaccines would have still been damaged in one way or the other", he said.

A woman receives the COVID-19 vaccine at a clinic in Blantyre, Malawi.

Trudeau has previously said that he would like to see 75 percent of Canadians get vaccinated before the land border with the United States can be opened and other worldwide travel restrictions can be lifted.

Dr. David Williams said the National Advisory Committee on Immunization does not recommend mixing vaccine doses _ getting an mRNA vaccine for a second jab after receiving a first dose of AstraZeneca _ because trial data is still not available.

Ontario led the way, administering 190,129 doses on Friday. Japan has supply agreements with Pfizer for a total of 194 million doses.

So far 212,615 doses have been given in Malawi. The country has 34,216 confirmed cases, including 1,153 deaths, according to the Africa CDC.

Projections based on average number of first doses administered over the previous seven days.

It is the first African country to publicly do this.

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