Health minister orders anti-viral vaccine trials accelerated
Thailand’s Public Health Minister, Anutin Charnvirakul, has urged the National Vaccines Committee to shorten the period, required to develop the specifications for the production of a COVID-19 vaccine, from six to three months.
Since the production of a useable vaccine will take about 18 months, Anutin said that the guidelines must be completed within three, adding that the private sector and all related agencies should be involved in development of a vaccine.
An estimated 45 billion baht for the vaccine initiative will be part of the 1.9 trillion baht in loans being sought by the Government.
Candidate vaccines will have to go through three stages of mandatory trials, on animals and humans, to prove their safety, efficacy and ability to generate antibodies.
The public health minister said that Thailand will cooperate with various other countries, which are currently in the process of developing anti-coronavirus vaccines.
Meanwhile, it is reported that the immigration checkpoint in Sadao district of Thailand’s Songkhla province will be closed for a week from tomorrow, after an immigration official and a policeman tested positive for COVID-19.
The infections have forced about 70 other immigration officials at the checkpoint to enter quarantine for 14 days.
The closure will allow workers time to disinfect the facility.
Border crossing by Thai migrant workers in Malaysia will be moved to the Padang Besar checkpoint during the closure.