Thailand begins vaccination for children from 12-17 hinh anh 1People receiving COVID-19 vaccine in Bangkok, Thailand. (Photo: AFP/VNA)
Bangkok (VNA) - Thailand began a vaccination drive targeting children from 12 to 17 with the aim of inoculating 5.4 million students in the country in preparation for the reopening of educational institutions in November.

Thailand’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently approved Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for children aged 12 and up with the Department of Disease Control giving assurance on sufficient COVID-19 vaccine supply for students nationwide.

Permanent secretary of the Ministry of Education, Supat Jampathong, said a survey by the agency showed that more than 90 percent of parents nationwide are willing to have their children vaccinated. To date, 33,047 students, or 88.2 percent of students at schools under the management of the Bangkok Metropolitan Government (BMA), have registered for vaccination.

According to the Ministry of Education, if schools want to reopen, at least 85 percent of teachers and staff will have to be vaccinated. Schools will also have to demonstrate that they can strictly follow the government's COVID-19 control measures to ensure the safety of students and staff.

However, these schools will be allowed to decide whether to switch to offline learning entirely or a combination of both. In the case of offline learning, the maximum number of students per class will be limited to 25 students. Students will be required to keep a distance of at least 1.5 meters while in the classroom.

The Health Ministry said 30.81 percent of the Thai population have been fully vaccinated with two shots of vaccine, while 49.11 percent have received one shots.

On October 4 morning, the country announced 9,930 new cases over the past 24 hours along with 97 deaths, raising the national caseload to 1,647,362 and the death toll to 17,111./.