Bangkok (Reuters)-Thailand started its COVID-19 vaccination campaign on Sunday, with cabinet ministers, health officials and medical staff being the first people to line up for vaccination.
The first dose of the vaccine developed by China New Novartis Biotechnology Co., Ltd. was delivered to Anutin Charnvirakul, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Health, at an infectious disease research institute in the suburbs of Bangkok.
“I hope this vaccination can protect people from the spread of COVID-1
The 66-year-old Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha participated in the event, although he was between 18 and 59 years old and was not suitable for SinoVac’s CoronaVac vaccine, so he did not get it.
Thailand received the first 200,000 doses of Sinovac vaccine and 117,00 imported AstraZeneca vaccines from China this week.
The Ministry of Health stated that CoronaVac has been distributed to 13 high-risk provinces, and these provinces will begin to inject injections into frontline health professionals and volunteers on Sunday.
The company said in a statement that after quality control testing, AstraZeneca’s vaccine will be ready for use in the second week of March.
Thailand is expected to deliver another 1.8 million doses of CoronaVac in March and April.
The large-scale exercise program is managed from the beginning every month. The exercise program will start in June with 61 million AstraZeneca vaccine injections produced by local company Siam Bioscience every month.
Since the pandemic began last year, the cumulative number of infections in Thailand has exceeded 25,000, which has already escaped the consequences of other countries.
(Interactive graphics to track the global spread of the coronavirus: here)
Reporting by Panu Wongcha-um; Editing by Clarence Fernandez