Venezuela receives first batch of Abdala vaccine from Cuba

abdala vaccine cuba
Cuban doctors during vaccination campaign. Photo: Yandry KW/Shutterstock

Venezuelan health authorities received a shipment of the Cuban-made coronavirus vaccine Abdala this week, only a few days after Havana reported 92.2-percent efficacy for the immunizer in its phase three clinical trials. Unlike other vaccines available on the market, Abdala requires three shots to provide sufficient immunization.

Caracas signed a deal to purchase 12 million doses of the vaccine, which Venezuelan Vice President Dercy Rodríguez called a “sign of good relations” between the countries. Cuba plans to produce 100 million doses in 2021, mostly for export to more than 30 interested countries

Following Abdala’s results, Cuba’s state-owned laboratories reported that their Soberana 02 vaccine achieved 62-percent efficacy against the coronavirus, above the World Health Organization’s 50-percent threshold. Venezuela has signed four vaccine contracts so far, reporting over 3.2 million doses received. However, the country’s official figures are riddled with suspicion, especially when it comes to its Covid-19 cases and deaths.