Vaccinations using China’s Sinopharm begin in Thailand on Friday

Vaccinations, using China’s Sinopharm vaccine procured by the Chulabhorn Royal Academy (CRA), began in Thailand today (Friday), starting with 6,400 elderly people, those with disabilities and the underprivileged, who could not register elsewhere.

Many people queued since 7am for the jabs, at the National Telecom Public Company in Bangkok’s Laksi district. The vaccine was free of charge for these people.

The inoculations come five days after the arrival of the first million doses of the vaccine and two days after it was cleared in quality control checks by the Department of Medical Sciences.

Although today’s inoculations target those living in Bangkok, some people with disabilities from other provinces, such as Surat Thani, Songkhla, Rayong and Nonthaburi, also came to the capital to receive their jabs.

The Sinopharm vaccine will be administered mainly to members of the public, private and civil organisations. 779,300 people from 6,437 such organisations will receive the first lot of the vaccine, while a few million more people, belonging to more than 10,000 organisations which have registered with the CRA, will have to wait.

CRA Secretary-General Dr. Nithi Mahanonda told Thai PBS that the academy will consider procuring other suitable vaccines in the future, but that Sinopharm will remain the main one it uses for the time being.

People with disabilities and the underprivileged, who came for vaccination today, reflected on the problems with vaccine registration elsewhere, which they say, have very long queues, while thanking the CRA for helping the vulnerable.

Sinopharm has become the third vaccine to be administered in Thailand, after Sinovac, also from China, and AstraZeneca. 5-6 million more Sinopharm doses may be procured by the CRA in the coming months.


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