Vietnam to receive 150 mln Covid-19 vaccine doses by 2022

By Chi Le   February 24, 2021 | 11:34 pm PT
Vietnam to receive 150 mln Covid-19 vaccine doses by 2022
A worker at HCMC's Tan Son Nhat Airport transports a container of Covid-19 vaccine developed by AstraZeneca, February 24, 2021. Photo by VnExpress/Huu Khoa.
Vietnam is expected to obtain 150 million Covid-19 vaccine doses from foreign and domestic sources by 2022, said the Ministry of Health.

The vaccines would come from British-Swedish firm AstraZeneca, global vaccine access mechanism Covax and other domestic producers. The reception schedule and number of doses received was reported by the National Steering Committee on Covid-19 Prevention and Control to the government Wednesday.

The first batch, delivered Wednesday, was 117,000 Covid-19 vaccine doses from AstraZeneca. They would be prioritized for those on the frontline of the pandemic fight, including medical workers, doctors, nurses, contact tracers and officials of Covid-19 prevention and control committees.

The second batch, expected to arrive within the first half of this year, would comprise 1.5 million additional doses, of which 1.2 million are provided by Covax and the rest by AstraZeneca. These doses would also be prioritized for those on the pandemic frontline, with the addition of diplomatic personnel, customs officers, immigration officers and soldiers.

The third batch, expected within the second quarter, would include 8.2 million additional doses from AstraZeneca. Soldiers who have not been inoculated during the second wave, along with police officers, teachers and the elderly (aged 80 and above) would be vaccinated at this time.

The fourth batch, expected within the third quarter, would consist of 10.9 million doses, including 3.6 million from Covax and the remainder from AstraZeneca. The elderly who have not been vaccinated, along with those working in essential businesses and those with chronic conditions, would be inoculated this time round.

The fifth batch, expected between the fourth quarter and first quarter of 2022, would provide 14.4 million doses by AstraZeneca for those with chronic conditions and not yet vaccinated.

The sixth batch, expected within the same time frame as the fifth, would afford 25.2 million Covax doses to those with chronic conditions and not yet vaccinated, along with those aged 65-80.

The final batch, expected between the fourth quarter and second quarter of 2022, would comprise 90.5 million doses from both foreign and domestic producers. They would be administered to those aged 65-80 who have not been vaccinated and those aged 18 and above not included in the aforementioned priority list.

Vaccines should be prioritized for citizens in areas with outbreaks, said the steering committee. The committee also proposed the health ministry and other relevant entities manage the buying, importing and distribution of vaccines.

Four indigenous vaccines are under development by Nanogen Pharmaceutical Biotechnology JSC, the Institute of Vaccines and Medical Biologicals, Vaccine and Biological Production Company No. 1, and the Center for Research and Production of Vaccines and Biologicals. Vietnam earlier said it was stepping up negotiations with the U.S.'s Pfizer and Moderna, along with other vaccine manufacturers in Russia and some other countries to ensure it can get a total 150 million doses to cover 70 percent of its 98-million population this year.

As of Thursday, Vietnam has recorded 2,412 Covid-19 cases, with 569 still active.

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