Health minister, US ambassador launch pediatric COVID vaccination drive.

ISLAMABAD -- Federal Health Minister Abdul Qadir Patel and US Ambassador Donald Blome here on Monday kicked off a nationwide campaign to vaccinate children with the first batch of eight million Pfizer COVID-19 pediatric vaccine doses donated by the United States.

Being the largest donor of COVID-19 vaccines to Pakistan, the United States had committed to provide more than 78 million doses and over 70 million of them had arrived in the country so far, a US embassy press release said.

The US government, through USAID, is supporting the Government of Pakistan's COVID-19 pediatric vaccination campaign for 5- 11 years old children. The campaign is taking place in the Federal Capital and selected districts of Sindh and Punjab provinces.

National Institute of Health Executive Director Major General Dr Aamer Ikram, Director of General Health Services Dr Shabana Salem, and other senior government officials also attended the event.

Addressing the inauguration campaign, Ambassador Blome remarked, 'Today, we celebrate the next step in protecting all Pakistanis against this devastating disease by launching the pediatric vaccination campaign. Our recent collaboration to protect the children of Pakistan demonstrates the importance of our longstanding partnership to work together and overcome the global challenge.'

Health Minister Abdul Qadir Patel praised the commitment of both countries to combat COVID-19 in Pakistan and said, 'Protecting our communities from COVID-19 is a shared priority of both of our governments, and these vaccines will keep millions of children safe...

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