May 19, 2021

Malawi to Destroy Expired COVID-19 Vaccines

More than 19 000 expired doses of coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccines will be destroyed by Malawi’s health authorities some time today, Wednesday 19 May.

According to reports, the doses – produced by Oxford-AstraZeneca – will be incinerated at Kamuzu Central Hospital in Lilongwe. Minister of Health, Khumbize Kandodo Chiponda, will be present to make a speech at the event before the doses are loaded onto the incinerator.

The vaccine doses, which were donated to Malawi by the African Union through the COVAX scheme, expired on 13 April.

Per guidelines from the World Health Organisation, any COVID-19 vaccine that has passed its expiry date should not be administered. Instead, it must be disposed of in a safe manner.

Malawi will become the first African nation to publicly dispose of these expired vaccines. A new batch of vaccines supplied through COVAX will be delivered to the country in the near future.

Malawi currently has 34 231 confirmed cases of COVID-19. Out of that total, 1 153 have succumbed to the virus, while 32 246 others have recovered.