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Vaccine policy switch leaves health services confused

Vaccine policy switch leaves health services confused

THAILAND: Hospitals and health offices have been left confused over the mixing of doses of Sinovac and AstraZeneca vaccines after the prime minister questioned the Health Ministry’s latest policy to curb the spread of COVID-19.

CoronavirusCOVID-19ChinesehealthVaccine
By Bangkok Post

Wednesday 14 July 2021, 02:37PM


Should the second shot for recipients of Sinovac vaccine be the AstraZeneca vaccine? Photo: Lillian Suwanrumpha/AFP file

Should the second shot for recipients of Sinovac vaccine be the AstraZeneca vaccine? Photo: Lillian Suwanrumpha/AFP file

The provincial health office in Nonthaburi today (July 14) opted to postpone its plan to give people who have received a single dose of the Sinovac vaccine a dose of AstraZeneca as their second jab.

Some private and public hospitals in Chiang Mai, including Hang Dong Hospital, announced they would provide no vaccination service today.

Nonthaburi was the first province to adopt the ministry’s new policy after it was endorsed by the National Communicable Disease Committee on Monday. The panel was chaired by Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul.

Nonthaburi announced its decision yesterday, only to immediately suspend its implementation this morning.

In Chiang Mai, the provincial public health office also announced its suspension. “In order to end the confusion, all health units are ordered to stop vaccine service on July 14, 2021,” Hang Dong Hospital posted the message on its Facebook account.

Mr Anutin said after the committee meeting on Monday that mixing the Sinovac for the first dose with AstraZeneca for the second would yield a better defence against the highly transmissible Delta variant of the coronavirus first detected in India.

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However, Prime Minister Prayut called for a thorough study of the jab policy shift during yesterday’s teleconferenced cabinet meeting, to take into consideration the safety of vaccine recipients.

The prime minister’s reaction followed a warning from the World Health Organization on Monday that indviduals should not mix and match different vaccines.

“Individuals should not decide for themselves, public health agencies can, based on available data. Data from mix and match studies of different vaccines are awaited - immunogenicity and safety both need to be evaluated,” WHO chief scientist Soumya Swaminathan said.

Respected virus expert Yong Poovorawan yesterday was adamant using Sinovac and AstraZeneca vaccines in series was safe and effective and Thailand’s best option for fighting the fast-spreading Delta variant.

Government spokesman Anucha Burapachaisri explained today that the prime minister did not order the plan cancelled, but he hoped the committee to be open for more reactions first.

The government’s priority was to see more people inoculated, as that would reduce the rate of daily fatalities and new infections, he said.

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Dave_C | 15 July 2021 - 11:31:06

1 AZ + 1 SV
1 SV + 1 AZ
2 SV + 1 AZ
3 SV
2 SV
2 AZ
Generals potpourri !!

Sandbar | 15 July 2021 - 09:20:55

Now a review of the vaccine policy. Like are you serious....you havent worked it out yet? Now Thailand wants to ramp up  its involvement in space. God help us!

DeKaaskopp | 15 July 2021 - 08:57:01

@Kurt   "... mental unbalanced...." Exactly what comes to my mind when reading your comments.

Kurt | 15 July 2021 - 00:00:02

Poor Thai health services that have to deal with mental unbalanced country leaders who are not disturbed by any logic ability to think and 'order' with sense. And Nonthaburi announced yesterday to adopt new policy, and ...next morning, today immediately suspend it. Please, can they  handle matters in such a way that the Thai population can have trust in them? This all is just kindergarten ...

Fascinated | 14 July 2021 - 19:20:07

Jeez- and these guys are Generals, thank goodness they didn't take people to war. Best they stay away from parties in breweries as well.

goldwing | 14 July 2021 - 15:56:59

Yesterday my British wife registered for a vaccination, she is over 60 the appointment came back with the vaccine being Sinovac. It seems they have no Astrazeneca available for expats now and they are being offered the next to useless Sinovac, probably the only way they can get rid of the huge stockpile they wasted lots of money on. Needless to say she did not accept it.  

 

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