Switzerland is forced to destroy 10.3 million doses of the Moderna vaccine against Covid-19, the expiry date of which was reached earlier in the week, the Swiss Ministry of Health announced on Saturday.
The ministry says it has no other choice since the doses expired on Wednesday.
According to the Beobachter news site, the cost of the doses to be destroyed amounted to 280 million Swiss francs (294 million euros).
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Order more doses than needed
In addition, 2.5 million doses are still stored at an army logistics base, and 7.8 million are kept in a depot in Belgium, said the ministry, which stressed that its vaccine supply strategy consisted, from the start, of ordering more doses than necessary for the 8.7 million inhabitants of Switzerland.
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The country has thus ordered doses from different laboratories to avoid becoming dependent on vaccines which could prove ineffective, escape delivery problems or contracts not respected.
Still 38 million doses expiring at the end of the year
In June, the Swissinfo news site estimated that the Swiss country had a surplus of 38 million doses of the various vaccines against Covid, which would expire before the end of the year.
The ministry said around 3.5 million doses of the new Moderna vaccine will be available when Switzerland launches its next booster campaign next month.
Switzerland, which has deplored 13,556 deaths linked to Covid-19 since the start of the pandemic, has vaccinated nearly 70% of its population.