Thai government accused of covering up AstraZeneca’s supply problems

Roll, roll …

The Thai government has said all foreign nationals living in the Kingdom should register for the vaccination, ahead of the nationwide rollout next month. The news was confirmed by Natapanu Nopakun of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, who you may be familiar with from the daily English briefings on behalf of the administration of the Covid-19 situation.

“All people living on Thai soil, Thais and foreign nationals, are urged to register for vaccination through the designated channels, if they wish to receive the Covid-19 vaccine.”

According to the Bangkok Post, various agencies have been tasked with handling the registration of foreigners living in Thailand. Natapanu says foreigners should contact the relevant agency to register for the vaccination.

“For example, the vaccinations of diplomats, members of international organizations and foreign media are coordinated by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Foreign students are under the responsibility of the Ministry of Higher Education, Science, Research and Innovation. Migrant workers from neighboring countries are supported by the Social Security Office. Spouses of Thai citizens, retirees, investors, and all other foreign nationals are advised to contact the hospital with their health records or register locally at designated vaccination locations. Businesses and organizations can also liaise with the Ministry of Public Health to organize vaccination schedules for their employees, regardless of nationality. “

The vaccination will be done primarily using Sinovac and AstraZeneca, but Natapanu says additional doses are being sought from other manufacturers. He adds that the first batch of locally made products AstraZeneca doses are expected next month, and the government’s goal is to vaccinate 70% of the population by the end of the year.

According to Natapanu, the private sector can import its own vaccine supplies, but must do so through the Government Pharmaceutical Organization.

“Most manufacturers will not sell Covid-19 vaccines directly to private companies, as these vaccines are approved for emergency use only. With this option, people will be able to choose their preferred vaccine even if it differs from those provided by the government. However, these vaccines have yet to be approved by the WHO, Thai FDA or the Department of Public Health. “

Last week, in a surprise move, the Chulabhorn Research Academy confirmed it was importing supplies of another Chinese vaccine, Sinopharm, to accelerate government deployment. The Food and Drug Administration approved the vaccine on May 28.

Sinopharm joins Sinovac, AstraZeneca, Johnson & Johnson and Moderna as fifth vaccine approved for emergency use. To date, however, there has been no confirmation of when supplies of the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine or the Moderna vaccine might be available.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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