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Moderna jabs to be imported by October

THAILAND: Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine, which will be offered as an alternative to AstraZeneca and Sinovac, is expected to be available in Thailand by October while 2 million doses of Sinovac’s COVID-19 vaccine will add to the country’s stockpile this month.

By Bangkok Post

Monday 17 May 2021, 08:42AM

Photo: AFP.

Photo: AFP.

Paiboon Aeksaengsri, secretary-general of the Private Hospital Association, said the association is coordinating with Zuellig Pharma Co, which is authorised to export the vaccine. He expects 5-6 million doses will be shipped to Thailand in the second half of this year.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) last week approved the registration of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine from ROVI Pharma Industrial Services S A, based in Spain’s Madrid. It is the fourth vaccine to be approved by the FDA, after the AstraZeneca, Sinovac and Johnson & Johnson vaccines.

Mr Paiboon said the price of Moderna shots will be set by the Government Pharmaceutical Organisation (GPO) which will procure the alternative vaccine supplies for distribution. He said recipients will be charged the standard price for the jabs and service fees, insisting private hospitals will not seek profits from distributing the COVID-19 vaccine.

Uachart Kanchanapitak, chairman of Ramkhamhaeng Hospital, said private hospitals are surveying demand for the alternative vaccine and will inform the GPO. He said demand ranges from 10,000 doses to 1 million doses.

However, he advised people to get their shots as soon as possible so the country can achieve herd immunity.

He also cited research findings that after people are fully vaccinated, their third or booster shot can come from any manufacturer. He likened it to vaccines against influenza which require a booster shot every year.

Meanwhile, GPO deputy director Sirinuch Cheewanpisalnukul said on Saturday (May 15) a total of 4.5 million doses of Sinovac’s vaccine have been delivered to Thailand, including 500,000 doses donated by China that arrived on Friday.

She said the GPO received another 500,000 doses of the Chinese-made vaccine on Saturday and another 1.5 million doses will be delivered later this month.

The first batch of 200,000 doses of Sinovac’s vaccine arrived in February, followed by 800,000 doses on March 22, 1.5 million doses on April 10, and two million doses this month so far.

As of Friday, a total of 2,218,420 doses of COVID-19 vaccines have been given to select people across the country.

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Christy Sweet | 17 May 2021 - 20:59:40

The studies were completed, it was the red tape that was eliminated, hence the 'emergency use' classification. I would presume someone loaded up on Sinovac and now needs to deplete the stores. No thanks. 

CaptainJack69 | 17 May 2021 - 12:53:12

Too slow. "Surveying demand"? I can tell them for free right now there's huge demand for vaccines recognized in the US and EU (like Moderna) not to mention anything that's more than Sinovac's 50% effective, but wait until October and who knows. Hurry it up.

CaptainJack69 | 17 May 2021 - 12:46:21

No one should be citing any "findings" about COVID vaccinations. All studies are preliminary and must be because no vaccine has anything more than emergency authorization (anywhere). No one 'knows' anything about booster shots or mixing vaccines yet. All we 'know' is that the EU and US aren't going to recognize Sinovac any time soon.


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