Skyrocketing cases and limited vaccination: The tale behind Middle East Covid-19

As various vaccines for Covid-19 developed by the end of 2020, countries around the globe have clashed to check their populations have retrieved adequate quantities of the vaccines. Monetary and operational challenges have cramped universal vaccination efforts, as under-developed countries wrestle to provide vaccines, chain for vaccine stock through the global COVAX drive. It will explore how to provide vaccines to the Middle East countries as they may not get them, as most vaccines have to be transported through two shots and need to be kept in cold storage. However, in some countries, the adequacy of vaccination drives is being sabotaged by a reluctance among the public and myths about the risk factor of vaccination. Globally, as of July 2021, about 26% of the world’s population has accepted at least one dose of the vaccine; significantly, only 1% of those residents who live in poor countries have accepted at least one dose. 

How far have vaccines succeeded?

These universal threats are mirroring vaccination outcomes in the MENA region itself. Roughly about 12% of the total population have accepted at least one dose of the vaccine. Rich countries in the region have ushered the vaccination efforts. The United Arab Nations (UAE), which instigated the vaccination drive at the end of December 2020, has made sure that about 75% of its population has got at least one dose. Likewise, Bahrain has furnished at least one dose to 63% of its population, and Qatar, although it started its drive later than both the other countries, yet it got one dose to 62% of its population. Other Gulf countries dally these countries, yet each has made interesting progress in administering the vaccine. 

In comparison, vaccination results in the MENA region’s poor and middle-income countries, specifically those disarrayed in conflict, fall behind. Outside of the Gulf, Jordan (25%), and Morocco (27%), no other region in MENA has delivered over 15% to one dose of its population. In the region’s largest population, Iran and Egypt, inoculation rates are below 5%, while in dispute-loaded Syria and Yemen, the statistic is below 1%. 

Skyrocketing cases and limited vaccination:

Following months of comparative serenity, Covid-19 has again been racing much of the MENA region, creating a major provocation for countries like low vaccination appraises and healthcare systems that were frequently in shabbiness ever since the pandemic hit. 

It was not completely unpredicted. The World Health Organisation cautioned in mid-July that contagiosum was rising over the region, with the specifically infectious Delta variant seeping through quickly. It was before the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha, which was observed between 19-23 July and includes large turnouts. 

From there, the contagious disease has risen in Libya, Morocco, Lebanon, and Iran–where the daily deaths have risen up to 665 per day. It spread to places like Tunisia and Algeria, although the numbers have come down, but faced serious consequences. 

Authorities have already been alerted regarding vaccine inequity as the region was already trading with the enumeration problems. Experts also warned that leaving countries behind on vaccines will only represent the pandemic, not merely in the region, but worldwide. Also, several countries are covering other exposure that involves disputes, natural calamities, water scarcity, supplanting, and other disease eruptions. These craftspeople are even more exposed to the disastrous effect of Covid-19. That alone should be the cause for world harmony to assure unbiased vaccine outbursts in the region. 

Let’s check some of the countries that are struggling with the Covid-19 obstacle.

Libya:

The cases have gone high in Libya and health workers are concerned that they have not taken precautionary measures from the start of the pandemic and now healthcare workers are not given proper remuneration as promised by the six-month-old interim government. Added to it there are severe shortages of medical supplies, like gloves and masks, and medicines. 

Also, the Covid-19 vaccination is becoming difficult to get even though they have received about 2.7 million doses of vaccines. 

Lebanon:

With its money in shreds, some hospitals now diminishing out of electricity, and medications because of allocation cuts, Lebanon can hardly respond to fresh Covid-19 cases, as it is elevating speedily from the month of June. 

Lebanon’s monetary crisis, which began before the pandemic, has weakened more and is disastrous. They predicted that local currency has lost 90% of its value since September 2019, also its food prices are up to 400 percent.

Lebanon’s cash-strapped government with the money from the World Bank has secured 2.64 million vaccine doses.

Tunisia:

Tunisia’s powerful third wave of Covid-19 became so disastrous that they sent protestors to the streets to dismiss the Prime Minister by the President of the country. It recorded the highest death rate of 22.025 deaths, with a population of 12 million. 

Since then, the country has begun a massive vaccination drive, getting funds from countries like UAE, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey. 

Similarly, Iraq and Yemen are facing their own battles. While Iraq has received about 2.9 million vaccine doses to cater to its people, Yemen received about 360,000 doses of India-produced Covishield. 

Although most of the MENA region countries have got the Covid-19 delta variant as the next wave, some are still thriving to come to terms with getting vaccinated as their major priority to survive. 

Priya
I, Priya Nagarajan, is a past Assistant Professor, mentor, tutor, counselor. Writing has always been a passion of mine and so changed my path to my passion. I believe language is the best way to convey your thoughts and dreams to get the results. I believe it takes a personal approach to reach individual success. I write with a flair for creativity and a keen eye for the professional.

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