Mexico plans to administer 7.4 million doses of Russian Sputnik V vaccine by the end-March

(REUTERS) – Mexico aims to administer 7.4 million doses of Sputnik V, a Russian-developed COVID-19 vaccine, to its people by the end of March, part of the country’s scramble to secure as much supply as quickly as possible.

The Mexican government has yet to approve the vaccine’s use, an official plan showed on Tuesday.

The plan nonetheless expects 400,000 doses to arrive during the week ending Jan. 29.

The vaccine distribution plan was presented during President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s daily morning news conference as he seeks to promote the government’s commitment to the speedy delivery of four vaccines.

Over the first three months of the year, more than 21 million total doses are expected from U.S. drugmaker Pfizer Inc, China’s CanSino Biologics Inc, Britain’s AstraZeneca, and Sputnik V.

Expected to be Mexico’s most-used vaccine during that time, Sputnik V requires two doses per person, and if the official schedule is met, 3.7 million people will have been inoculated with it by the end of March, the figures showed.

Government officials say Mexico is set to purchase 12 million doses of the Russian vaccine, and that health authorities could approve its use in the country very soon.

Reporting by Dave Graham; Editing by Pravin Char and Peter Cooney for REUTERS