Health Minister Arunas Dulkys told the Cabinet that the European Commission had agreed with BioNTech and Pfizer on the purchase of additional 200 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine. According to the ministry’s estimations, Lithuania would get extra 1.24 million doses on a pro rata basis.
“We propose to use that possibility, to get Lithuania’s share, and to revise our previous decision accordingly,” the minister said.
Also, the government rejected the European Commission’s proposal to purchase extra 310,000 doses of Moderna’s vaccine. Dulkys pointed out that the US pharmaceutical company had increased the price of its vaccine by one-third and the terms of vaccine delivery would not be acceptable for Lithuania.
“Moderna is increasing the price [of its vaccine] and does not want to distribute the vaccine on the same conditions … therefore, our task group has come up with a proposal … not to purchase these extra doses,” the minister said.
More than 27,000 people have already received the first dose of COVID-19 vaccine in Lithuania.
Both the Moderna and the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccines require two shots: a priming dose, followed by a booster shot. The interval between Moderna doses is 28 days; for the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, it is 21 days.