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AstraZeneca will remain Thailand’s primary vaccine, insists Health Minister

Maya Taylor



PHOTO: Wikimedia Commons

The Health Minister insists the AstraZeneca vaccine will remain Thailand’s primary Covid-19 jab, despite concerns over rare side-effects. Some countries have suspended its use, while Denmark is the first country in Europe to abandon it completely. However, Anutin Charnvirakul says it’s up to each country to make their own decisions and Thailand is pressing ahead with the jab.

“There are many factors for each country whether to use or not use the vaccine. But we have expertise to closely monitor the vaccine information. We base decisions on scientific knowledge, not news. If something happens, we will let the public know. Please do not worry about it.”

Thailand is ordering vaccines from a limited number of manufacturers, primarily AstraZeneca and China’s Sinovac Biotech. According to a Bangkok Post report, the Kingdom is purchasing 71 million doses of the AstraZeneca jab and 2 million doses of CoronaVac, the vaccine from Sinovac. The rollout is expected to begin in June, with health officials aiming to inoculate 35 million people (half the population) by the end of the year.

However, the challenge will be gaining the public’s trust, as countries around the world express concerns about the very rare risk of blood clots that appears to be associated with adenovirus vector vaccines, such as AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson. The single-dose vaccine from Johnson & Johnson is the third vaccine to be approved for emergency use in Thailand, but the US has just suspended its use following a number of blood clot incidents similar to the AstraZeneca cases.

Meanwhile, the World Health Organisation and the European Medicines Agency insist the benefits of the AstraZeneca vaccine outweigh the risks of very rare blood clots. In the UK, the vaccine has been widely administered as the country sets its sights on achieving herd immunity, with Anutin pointing out that infections there have dropped considerably.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post


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  1. Avatar

    Ian Bromley

    Friday, April 16, 2021 at 9:58 am

    Full steam ahead and ignore the iceberg said the captain of the Titanic.

  2. Avatar

    Carl L

    Friday, April 16, 2021 at 10:15 am

    The whole discussion about the rare blood clotting is ridiculous The risks associated with getting covid, smoking or even using contraceptive pills is hundreds or even thousands times bigger… If any action should be taken, there should be temporary restriction to use AstraZeneca for women in fertile age who are the victims of the rare blood cloths. Everyone else (all men and women over 50 should have no issues)
    No one is talking about issues with Sinovac, it has very limited documentation and the results around the world shows that it has very low efficacy, it barely protects against Covid at all, in sharp contrast to the AstraZeneca jab that has proven very safe and effective. The biggest risk of this ridiculous debate against AstraZeneca, which is mainly politics, is further delay in distribution of jab’s that for sure will continue to let the virus spread, let it mutate more and will kill many people while destroying what’s left of the tourist industry!!

  3. Avatar


    Friday, April 16, 2021 at 10:51 am

    It is true that AZ is being very generous with kickbacks !
    Now as far as vaccine efficiency is concerned we still have major concerns…
    But of course Dr. Prof. Anutin knows better ???

  4. Avatar

    Simon Small

    Friday, April 16, 2021 at 1:08 pm

    I don’t think the problem’s side effects, @Carl L, but efficacy. If AZ is next to useless against variants, what’s the point when by the time it comes around that’s what Thailand will probably have?

  5. Avatar


    Friday, April 16, 2021 at 4:15 pm

    Totally agree with Carl L. I had my first jab with the AZ vaccine three days ago and the other people in the waiting had no reservations at all. However, some reports mentioned up to 40% stayed did not show up in the last week.

  6. Avatar


    Friday, April 16, 2021 at 7:58 pm

    Simon Small the AZ vaccine isn’t “next to useless” against variants, in fact there isn’t a single variant which has been proven to defeat any of the vaccines, when there is we can talk about it but in the meantime you’d be doing us all a favour if you kept your doom and gloom narrative to yourself.

  7. Avatar

    Chiang Mai Mark

    Saturday, April 17, 2021 at 1:24 pm

    A 71 year old monk died just a few hours after he was injected with the Covid-19 vaccine while 3 other monks at the same temple, Wat Samphanthawong Moranaphap in Bangkok, were taken to the hospital sometime after being injected with the vaccine to be treated for a high fever. This is just a small sample of people dying from AZ, and also proves it is not safe for people age 50 and up. It’s killing people all over the world. They are saying it’s safe because the actual ratio of deaths per # of injections are not high. The chances of winning the lottery are not high either, but I don’t want to buy a lottery ticket to death. The johnson & johnson vaccine is also causing blood clots . Denmark has suspended the use of AZ now. For now the other brands of vaccine appear to be safe. But plans are already in place for Thailand to produce and sell AZ and there is money to be made so, full steam ahead.

  8. Avatar


    Saturday, April 17, 2021 at 10:15 pm

    Possibly because its cheap ?

  9. Avatar


    Sunday, April 18, 2021 at 4:14 pm

    A hospital in my country published X-rays showing infected lungs from an elderly man. The patient previously refused the AZ jab and now is seriously ill with Covid-19. He told told the medical staff with fear in his eyes that he is full of regret. The X-rays are published with his permission to give a stern warning to anti-vaxxers.

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