The first batch of the vaccine just landed in the UAE…

The year 2020 has seen us face unprecedented change due to Covid-19. It has now been announced that the first batch of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine has arrived in Dubai, and it’s set to be rolled out for free, starting with seniors and those with chronic health conditions.

The Dubai Health Authority is giving advice and taking bookings for residents who wish to get the vaccine, via a hotline. For now, Emirati and resident senior citizens over the age of 60, frontline workers, people of determination and people with chronic diseases aged 18 and above are being given priority.

Those who call the hotline will be asked a series of questions to determine if they are eligible for the vaccine in the first phase. Questions include age, existing health conditions and if a person is pregnant. To book an appointment residents must provide DHA with a Medical Record Number (MRN) first.

If you don’t have an MRN, you’ll need to email and provide a copy of your Emirates ID.

Dubai’s Supreme Committee of Crisis and Disaster Management said in a statement on Twitter late on Tuesday an “extensive vaccination campaign” against Covid-19 kicks off in Dubai on Wednesday, using Pfizer-BioNTech’s vaccine and is free of charge.

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Dubai Media Office posted a number of Tweets about the arrival of the vaccine, stating: “Dubai receives first batch of Pfizer-BioNTech’s Covid-19 vaccines transported from Brussles to Dubai on @Emirates SkyCargo flight. The shipment was offloaded and cleared on priority basis on arrival at Emirates’ dedicated SkyPharma facility.”

Administration of the vaccine will start from today, Wednesday, December 23. Khaleej Times wrote that “according to sources the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine will be made available at four health centres in Dubai — Zabeel, Al Barsha, Nad Al Hammar and Al Mamzar.”

The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine is the second Covid-19 vaccine to be rolled out in Dubai. The UAE began administering China’s Sinopharm vaccine to all citizens and residents from December 9, free of cost.

Also according to Khaleej Times, it looks like the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine is currently available only to senior citizens who are residents of Dubai and hold a valid visa from the emirate, and anybody with a chronic illness above the age of 18.

The hotline number is the 800342.

Image: Getty