AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine batch lands in HCMC

By Huu Khoa   February 24, 2021 | 06:16 pm GMT+7
Ten containers with 117,600 Covid-19 vaccine doses produced by AstraZeneca arrived at Ho Chi Minh City's Tan Son Nhat International Airport on Wednesday morning.
AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine batch lands in HCMC

At around 10:45 a.m. Wednesday, the flight carrying Covid-19 vaccine doses arrived at HCMC's Tan Son Nhat Airport. They're the first batch of Covid-19 vaccines produced by British-Swedish firm AstraZeneca in collaboration with Oxford University and imported by Vietnam Vaccine JSC (VNVC).

AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine batch lands in HCMC

After landing, the plane carrying the vaccine is guided to its berth.

AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine batch lands in HCMC

Employees at Tan Son Nhat Airport prepare to receive the vaccines while wearing protective suits.

AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine batch lands in HCMC

The first vaccine batch leaves the plane.

A VNVC representative said the batch is part of an agreement last November with AstraZeneca.

Truong Quoc Cuong, Deputy Health Minister, at Tan Son Nhat Airport on Wednesday said Vietnam and Thailand are the first two ASEAN countries to receive Covid-19 vaccines produced by AstraZeneca.

AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine batch lands in HCMC

Vaccine containers are loaded onto special vehicles at the airport. They would be transported to VNVC cold storage units kept at between two to eight degrees Celsius.

AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine batch lands in HCMC

Containers are disinfected to prevent possible contamination and infection.

AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine batch lands in HCMC

An airport worker inspects the containers before transportation.

AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine batch lands in HCMC

Around 30 million Covid-19 vaccine doses would be provided to Vietnam within the first half of this year according to the health ministry.

Through Covax, a global mechanism for developing, manufacturing and procuring Covid-19 vaccines and supply for member countries, Vietnam would receive an additional 4.9 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine within the first half of this year as well as 33 million more in the third quarter.

AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine batch lands in HCMC

A container is transported to cold storage.

VNVC is the first Vietnamese firm to possess Covid-19 vaccines and the only firm chosen by AstraZeneca to distribute the vaccine in large numbers across Vietnam. In January, VNVC was approved by the Health Ministry to import, export and store vaccines and other biological products at low temperature. Currently, three ultra-cold storage units (kept at minus 86 degrees Celsius) are operated by VNVC in Hanoi, HCMC and Da Nang, capable of storing three million Covid-19 vaccine doses at once.

AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine batch lands in HCMC

By 2:10 p.m., 10 vaccine containers had successfully entered cold storage in Phu Nhuan District.

The AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine, named ChAdOx, has an efficacy rate of between 62-90 percent. While lower than other Covid-19 vaccines produced by Moderna and Pfizer, the AstraZeneca vaccine is cheaper and easier to transport and store.

Vietnam has recorded 2,403 Covid-19 cases so far, with 604 still active.

 
 
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