Photo Credit: Yonatan Sindel / Flash 90

The Moderna-developed Coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine will arrive in Israel this month, two months ahead of the scheduled delivery in March, the company stated.

Moderna announced Monday that Israel’s Ministry of Health has given authorization to import its COVID-19 vaccine, “a landmark moment in our company’s history and in the global fight against COVID-19,” said Stéphane Bancel, Chief Executive Officer of Moderna.

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Israel will be the third country in the world to deploy the vaccine, after the US and Canada.

“This is the third regulatory authorization for the COVID-19 Vaccine Moderna, and it’s first outside of North America,” Bancel stated, thanking the Ministry of Health for “their efforts, as their teams have worked tirelessly alongside ours to ensure a timely authorization of this vaccine.”

Israel secured a total of six million doses for three million citizens. It is yet unclear how many doses will arrive in January.

Israel is the fastest country in the world in vaccinating its population, and an excellent showcase for the pharmaceutical companies.

In the two and a half weeks, since the launching of Operation “Lend a Shoulder” to inoculate the population, over 1,370,000 Israelis have received the Pfizer-developed vaccine, including 146,000 on Monday.

Our World in Data, a global, aggregated database on COVID-19, showed that on a scale of the number of COVID-19 vaccination doses administered per 100 people within a given population, Israel came in first with 14.14, four times the number of the country ranked second, Bahrain with 3.62.

The global average is currently 0.17.

Israel hopes to vaccinate about a third of its population against the Coronavirus by the end of January, possibly the first country in the world to achieve this crucial landmark.

In the meantime, Israel is facing another tightening of the lockdown restrictions as the number of daily infections is skyrocketing.

The Ministry of Health updated Tuesday morning that it documented 8,308 new infection cases over the past 24 hours.

Of the 110,813 tests done on Sunday, a hiking 7.6% returned positive.

764 patients hospitalized with Corona are in serious condition, 183 of them are on life support.

Since the outbreak in February 2020, 3, 445 Israelis have died of the virus.

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Aryeh Savir is director of the International division of Tazpit News Agency.