US to give Vietnam another 3 million Moderna vaccine doses

By Vu Anh   July 16, 2021 | 09:06 pm PT
US to give Vietnam another 3 million Moderna vaccine doses
A batch of Moderna Covid-19 vaccine donated by the U.S. via Covax arrives at Hanoi's Noi Bai International Airport, July 10, 2021. Photo by the U.S. Embassy in Hanoi.
The U.S. will provide Vietnam an additional three million doses of the Moderna Covid-19 vaccine via the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The alliance, GAVI, is a public–private global health partnership with the goal of increasing access to immunization in developing and poor countries.

Last week, the U.S. delivered two million doses of Moderna vaccine through the Covax program.

Those doses are part of the 80 million that U.S. President Joe Biden has pledged to donate to various countries.

Moderna vaccine, or Skipevax, is developed by U.S. company Moderna from messenger RNA, or mRNA, which contains instructions for human cells to construct a harmless piece of the coronavirus called the spike protein that triggers an immune response in humans.

Some 53 countries and territories have been using it including the U.S., Canada, the European Union, the U.K., Israel, and Singapore.

Vietnam aims to buy 150 million doses of Covid-19 vaccine to vaccinate 70 percent of its 96-million population by next April.

According to the Ministry of Health, about 105 million doses from various sources have been committed for use in Vietnam.

Of the sum, there will be 31 million doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine, which is also developed from the mRNA via a contract the government has signed with the developer and five million doses of Moderna vaccine that Zuellig Pharma Vietnam Co. Ltd has been authorized to distribute in Vietnam.

For the remaining doses, 38.9 million of AstraZeneca vaccine, produced by British-Swedish firm AstraZeneca and Oxford University, will be provided to Vietnam via Covax and another 30 million AstraZeneca doses via Vietnam Vaccine JSC (VNVC)'s commercial contract.

Vietnam is also in a negotiation process to buy 40 million Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine doses and 15 million India’s Covaxin doses.

As of July 12, Vietnam had received eight million Covid-19 vaccine doses from different developers.

The nation has so far vaccinated more than 4.23 million people against Covid-19 and 298,177 have got two doses.

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