Iraq sees low Covid vaccine turnout despite recent record-high cases
Iraqis are not turning out to receive their Covid vaccines despite the jab's availability, a member of Iraqi parliament's health committee told The New Arab's Arabic-language sister site on Monday.
Al-Moussawi told Al-Araby Al-Jadeed that some health centres do not have the vaccine doses they need – despite doses now pouring into Iraq.
Public health director Riyad Al-Halfi told state newspaper Al-Sabaah that Iraq had received two million new doses of the Sinopharm and Pfizer vaccines on Monday, to be distributed throughout the country.
The government has launched vaccination drives across Iraq, including the densely populated Baghdad suburb of Sadr City.
Iraq saw a record-high of 13,525 cases in 24 hours at the end of last month. Cases have in the past few days dropped to below 10,000 a day.
Coronavirus wards in hospitals are at capacity, Al-Halfi said.
There are fears that the virus will spread further after the education ministry announced that schools would reopen after the summer holidays.
Upcoming religious pilgrimages to Najaf and Karbala might also cause case numbers to rise.