Thailand sets to start COVID-19 vaccinations on February 14 hinh anh 1A healthcare worker holds a vial of the AstraZeneca/Oxford Covid-19 vaccine (Photo: Reuters)
Hanoi (VNA) – Thai Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-o-cha said on January 17 that Thailand is targeting the immunisation of 19 million people against the coronavirus in the first phase of inoculations starting on February 14.

Inoculations will begin with 50,000 doses of AstraZeneca’s vaccine, he said, giving no timeline for the first phase.

Of the 19 million to be vaccinated, 11 million will be people aged over 60, and 6.1 million are those with underlying diseases, he said.

Another 1.7 million doses will be for medical professionals, and 15,000 for government workers involved in managing the virus. Meanwhile, those under 18 and pregnant women will not be vaccinated this time.

The Thai Prime Minister apologised for not solving COVID-19 related problems as fast as the public had demanded.

The timeframe of vaccination will depend on the capacity of hospitals administering the vaccines and number of doses they receive, according to head of the government’s vaccine management committee Sophon Mekthon.

Thailand has altogether secured 26 million doses from AstraZeneca to be produced by local firm Siam Biosience and 2 million doses from China’s Sinovac. It has also reserved 35 million doses from AstraZeneca.
Thailand will initially import the vaccines but is expected by June to be producing it locally, Sophon added.

On January 27, Thailand documented 819 new COVID-19 infections. The country had reported 15,465 COVID-19 cases and 76 deaths.

Authorities say they will vaccinate 31.5 million people./.