Honduras Warns About the Possibility of Fake Covid Vaccines in Circulation

Mar 19, 2021

After Mexico discovers a batch of fake Sputnik V vaccine bound for Honduras, Honduran authorities ask people to stay alert for anyone offering vaccine for money.

In one of the more depressing (and yet inevitable) stories about this pandemic, Honduras last night issued a warning to people to watch out for fake Covid-19 vaccinations.

The warning came after Mexican authorities discovered over 1,000 vials consisting of some 5,700 doses of supposed Sputnik V vaccine on a private flight bound for Honduras.

Mexico has already received 400,000 doses of the Sputnik vaccine from Russia, and Honduras has an agreement with Moscow to receive 700,000 doses.

Putting aside the Russian allegation that the fake vaccines (complete with spelling mistakes on the packaging) are part of a western smear campaign to discredit Sputnik V, the worry in Honduras is that other fake batches may have already made it into the country.

The president of ARSA, Honduras’ Sanitary Regulation Fund called on Hondurans to watch out for the fake vaccines.

We call on the population that if you’re offered the vaccine in return for money, be careful, it’s a scam. Vaccines are free and are not offered through social networks,” said Arsa President Commissioner Francis Contreras.

He went on to say that no country in the world is selling vaccines privately.

There’s no evidence of the Sputnik V vaccine or any other circulating privately in Honduras. Contreras’ comments are simple words of caution right now.

But if you’re in Honduras, and someone offers you a vaccine in exchange for money, please refuse and let authorities know.

Honduras has yet to received its allotted 700,000 doses of the Sputnik V vaccine. 

Other countries in Central America set to receive the Russian vaccine include Belize and Nicaragua (and possibly Guatemala). As with all other types of Covid vaccine, Sputnik V will be free of charge and admininistered officially in these countries.

The Sputnik V vaccine came under some controversy last year when Russia rolled it out before releasing the final trial data. Since then, western experts have deemed it safe and effective with a 92% effectivity rate against Covid.

Russia has made deals with over 50 countries for its Sputnik V vaccine, and has set up production facilities around the world.

James Dyde is the editor of centralamerica.com. He lives in Escazu, Costa Rica.