- Ministry of Health debunks claims that COVID-19 vaccines used in Botswana are not FDA-approved
- Says own team recently returned from the US
- Vaccines used in Botswana have WHO and FDA approva
The Ministry of Health and Wellness (MoH) has dismissed claims that people injected with vaccines in use in Botswana are not allowed entry into the United States of America.
The claims followed several travel restrictions imposed by the US at the peak of the pandemic, some of which are currently being eased as part of efforts to re-open the world’s biggest economy. Because of these claims, some Batswana have been crossing into neighbouring South Africa for vaccination.
Dismissing the rumour as baseless and the concerns being untrue, the chief spokesman of MoH, Dr Christopher Nyanga, told The Botswana Gazette this week: “We do not think it is true that Americans do not recognize our vaccines. Just last week, a team of Ministry of Health staff visited the US and were not denied entry.”
The White House has said the final decision regarding what vaccines will be accepted for entry into the country will be made by the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). According to America’s top medical body, a person is considered “fully vaccinated” against the coronavirus if they have received any jab authorized by the country’s Food and Drug Administration and/or the World Health Organization (WHO).
So far seven vaccines have been approved for use by the WHO. These are Moderna, Pfizer-BioNTech, Johnson & Johnson, Oxford-AstraZeneca, Covishield (an Oxford-AstraZeneca formulation) and China’s Sinopharm and Sinovac.
The WHO has in the past warned that attempts to undermine approved vaccines could jeopardize the world’s fight against the pandemic.