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Covid-19 immunisations to start as soon as vaccines arrive… whenever that is

Caitlin Ashworth

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Covid-19 immunisations to start as soon as vaccines arrive… whenever that is | The Thaiger
PHOTO: AFP

Covid-19 immunisation in Thailand will start within a week after the the first batch of AstraZeneca vaccines arrive… whenever that is. Health officials initially pushed for Valentine’s Day to roll out immunisations, but no official date has been set and it’s unclear if the vaccine will even arrive this month. Khaosod English says “health officials can’t even agree on Covid vaccine launch date.”

Thailand health officials expect the first 50,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine sometime within the next month… or next. The European Union recently announced plans to tighten rules on exports of coronavirus vaccines and potentially blocking shipments to non-EU countries. AstraZeneca’s vaccine would be shipped to Thailand from Italy.

Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul told Khaosod English that vaccinations in Thailand won’t happen until March. On the other hand, Tawee Chotpitayasunondh from the National Communicable Disease Committee told reporters that the AstraZeneca vaccine will arrive this month and the first dose administered within a week after arrival.

In an earlier report, PM Prayut Chan-o-cha announced that 19 million people will be vaccinated in the first phase of inoculations, planned to start this month. He said 11 million will be people over the age of 60, 6.1 million people with underlying conditions and 1.7 million people who work in the medical field. Another 15,000 government workers involved in managing the virus will also be vaccinated in the first phase.

At a news briefing yesterday, Tawee outlined the possible side effects from the AstraZeneca vaccine. He says the most common side effects include inflammation and pain around the area the vaccine was injected.

While serious side effects are rare, those with critical cases happen around 15 minutes after vaccination, Tawee says, adding that patients must stay on site for at least 30 minutes after the vaccination as a precaution.

Thailand has also secured 2 million doses of China’s Sinovac Biotech vaccine and health officials expect the first 200,000 doses to arrive this month. Tawee says Thai authorities are asking producers for more information before approving the vaccine for emergency use.

SOURCES: Thai PBS | Associated Press | Khaosod English

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17 Comments

17 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Siso

    Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 4:16 pm

    50.000 vaccines somewhere in a timeframe of 2 months if lucky, and another order of 200.000 vaccines which Isnt deemed completely safe and approved yet… but a lot of cries for help and rush to get tourist back in bigger numbers asap, but of course with a 2 week mandatory quarantine not to forget. Also a wide spectrum of very strict to lesser measures trough out the whole country at this very moment and infection numbers higher then they ever been, and still people here like issaan boy john defending and rooting for the incompetent moron army ruling elite is mindboggling

    • Avatar

      Issan John

      Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 8:29 pm

      The only thing mind boggling here is your imagination.

      Try finding any comment I’ve made where I’ve been “defending and rooting for the incompetent moron army ruling elite”.

      Any at all.

      • Avatar

        Ynwaps

        Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 10:18 pm

        The incels are still salty about your stoic comments

        • Avatar

          Issan John

          Thursday, February 4, 2021 at 1:47 am

          ???

          • Avatar

            Colin G

            Thursday, February 4, 2021 at 10:31 am

            I’ve cracked it, that’s a WWII-type cypher, like “the dragon flies low over the moonlight lake”….

            Sadly, you seem to be mislaid the code-book ?

  2. Avatar

    Ian

    Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 5:03 pm

    The title says it all so sad

  3. Avatar

    EdwardV

    Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 11:33 pm

    It could get worse. There is talk about nationalizing vaccine makers in Europe, which would basically cut off all supplies to third party countries outside of the EU for 6-12 months. The EU has bungled the acquisition phase so badly, the world is teetering on a vaccine war. It’s not likely to get that bad, but even just a further implementation of export controls almost works out to the same result.

    • Avatar

      Ray

      Thursday, February 4, 2021 at 4:51 am

      You’re wrong. The EU will not cut off any supplies to third party countries outside the EU. It will however, ask the vaccine producers production numbers and transparency regarding where they are distributed. The EU is concerned that apparently the UK has no shortages of the AZ vaccine and the EU will only get 40% of the promised batches. FYI the EU paid almost the same for the vaccine as the UK. Both parties funded the research and production. The UK rushed the approval process, which is probably a good decision. But this does not mean that they rake in all the available vaccines. Any foreseen shortages should have been equally distributed. This feud does not affect other parties, especially third world countries.

      • Avatar

        EdwardV

        Thursday, February 4, 2021 at 5:12 am

        Besides the fact I never claimed the EU would cut off supplies, just the possibility exists. Are you honestly saying the EU didn’t seriously consider it? Seems the WHO thought so enough they warned the EU against it. That aside, the UK rushing the order certainly does mean they get to rake their own source first, so says the EU. The EU said yesterday they would not interfere with any existing contracts. That was directed toward the UK because the UK contract with AZ requires they get first dibs from UK factories. The EU rolled over on that point. The problem is the UK moved first and got to write their contract which favored them above all. The EU screwed the pooch and took too long. The result of that is their contract doesn’t have the same stipulations. You snooze, you lose.

        • Avatar

          Ray

          Thursday, February 4, 2021 at 5:42 am

          If you mean to say that the UK outwitted the EU by formulating the contract differently, than this is deplorable and surely will backfire on Brexit procedures. The EU always assumed the vaccine would be fairly distributed between all funding parties. The diplomatic clause used in the EU contract “to the best of their ability” proves this. The UK, by the person of Johnson, took advantage. They must have communicated the same intentions but used different formulations in their contract. These are pirate tactics.

          • Avatar

            Colin G

            Thursday, February 4, 2021 at 10:40 am

            “Took advantage” ? Only in the sense that UK has had the good sense to leave the EU and now, not surprisingly, acts independently. Astra Zeneca, for its part, has honourably kept to the terms of the contract that it has with the UK government.

            Simple…..

    • Avatar

      Alavan

      Thursday, February 4, 2021 at 5:37 pm

      Not correct. Trump was the first to say all vaccines made in the US must stay there, and it did. Belgium for example exported Pfizer to the US, UK and Israel.
      But the EU has cotracts with firms and there is an agreement on the amount and date of delivery. Specific with the Oxford vaccin it is written that if the plants in the EU can’t deliver, those in the UK will intervene.
      Now plants in the EU can’t deliver, and AstraZeneca and Boris say “no way we will deliver from the UK”. Then it is normal that the EU want to check if it is true that the plants in the EU are delivering to the UK in stead of to the EU.
      The EU don’t want to nationalise, they just want a correct control on what is exported.

  4. Avatar

    Issan John

    Thursday, February 4, 2021 at 1:49 am

    China, Russia, India … there’s no shortage of offers.

  5. Avatar

    EdwardV

    Thursday, February 4, 2021 at 4:05 am

    Granted John, except getting an offer and actually getting the vaccine in country are two very different things right now. I think we can both agree on that. Vaccine supply aside, have you seen the new “Phuket First October” scheme? According to Insider.com, which is referencing a Bloomberg story, seems Phuket wants to allow vaccinated international tourists to resume visits to the island without a quarantine. The plan is for the island business community to purchase enough vaccine to cover at least 70% of the population by September first. Allowing them to reopen come October first. It’s still pretty vague on details, and of course it needs government approval. Iffy at best if you ask me, but goes to show the industry doesn’t think can survive missing out on second high season. Otherwise they probably wouldn’t be willing to pony up the cost of some 800K – 1M doses. JMO

  6. Avatar

    Ray

    Thursday, February 4, 2021 at 5:03 am

    On a positive note:
    Results that show the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine might reduce the spread of coronavirus have been hailed as “absolutely superb” by the health secretary (UK).
    Mr Hancock called the study “really encouraging” on Twitter, adding that the results were “absolutely superb”.
    The results of the study, which has not yet been formally published, suggest that the vaccine may have a “substantial” effect on transmission of the virus.
    Speaking on BBC Breakfast, he said this latest analysis showing the vaccine reduces transmission would “help us all get out of this pandemic”.
    Of course our correspondent in Issan will wait for the publications of the studies before he will stop advocating the opposite.

  7. Avatar

    Grumpy John

    Thursday, February 4, 2021 at 8:45 am

    AstraZeneca vaccine for the ‘Bangkok elite’ (How I hate that term!) and the top monkeys in government and the Sinovac poison for the masses….unless they have the readies to pay top dollar for the AstraZeneca vaccine or the like kind.

    Hydroxychloroquine cocktail for me if I need it. I am not putting some poison cocktail poorly tested in my body. You just know it’s dodgy when the government rules that there is no liability for the manufacturer when things go wrong.

    • Avatar

      Ray

      Thursday, February 4, 2021 at 2:54 pm

      Sure Grumpy John, go for a Hydroxychloroquine cocktail if you need it. Maybe you get a Darwin Award.

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Read more headlines, reports & breaking news in Thailand. Or catch up on your Thailand news.

Caitlin Ashworth is a writer from the United States who has lived in Thailand since 2018. She graduated from the University of South Florida St. Petersburg with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and media studies in 2016. She was a reporter for the Daily Hampshire Gazette In Massachusetts. She also interned at the Richmond Times-Dispatch in Virginia and Sarasota Herald-Tribune in Florida.

Coronavirus (Covid-19)

OPINION – Vaccinating against Covid-19, why wouldn’t you?

The Thaiger

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OPINION – Vaccinating against Covid-19, why wouldn’t you? | The Thaiger

by Andrew J. Wood

The World Health Organisation not only advises that vaccines save millions of lives each year, but they also reduce transmissions. They and their partners are working together on tracking the pandemic, advising on critical interventions and distributing vital medical supplies to those in need, thereby reducing the number of infected people to transmit the virus.

Vaccines work by training and preparing the body’s natural defences — the immune system — to recognise and fight off the viruses they target. After vaccination, if the body is later exposed, the body is immediately ready to destroy them, preventing illness.

WHO states on its website…

“Since February 2021, at least seven different vaccines have been rolled out. Vulnerable populations in all countries are the highest priority for vaccination.

“It is understandable that some people may be concerned about getting vaccinated now that Covid-19 vaccines are available. While more Covid-19 vaccines are being developed as quickly as possible, routine processes and procedures remain in place to ensure the safety of any vaccine that is authorised or approved for use. Safety is a top priority, and there are many reasons to get vaccinated.”

One of the most frequent asked questions is can a Covid-19 vaccine make you sick with Covid-19? The simple answer is no, as none of the Covid-19 vaccines contain the live virus.

According to the USA’s Centre for Disease Control the benefits of getting a Covid-19 jab will help keep you from getting the virus. All Covid-19 vaccines currently available in the United States have been shown to be highly effective at preventing Covid-19.

“Based on what we know about vaccines for other diseases and early data from clinical trials, experts believe that getting a Covid-19 vaccine may also help keep you from getting seriously ill even if you do get Covid-19 and may also protect people around you, particularly people at increased risk.“

The CDC reminds us that wearing masks and social distancing help reduce the chance of being exposed to the virus or spreading it to others, but these measures are not enough. Vaccines will work with your immune system so it will be ready to fight the virus if exposed.

Australia’s government says vaccination is the most effective way to protect against infectious diseases. Vaccines strengthen your immune system by training it to recognise and fight against specific viruses. They add that when you get vaccinated, you are protecting yourself and helping to protect the whole community by slowing down the spread of the disease. Achieving herd or social immunity is a long-term goal. It usually requires a large amount of the population to be vaccinated.

The CDC notes that people who have already had Covid-19 or tested positive may still benefit from getting the Covid-19 vaccination. There is not enough information currently available to say if or for how long people are protected from getting Covid-19 after they have had it (natural immunity). Early evidence suggests natural immunity from Covid-19 may not last very long, but more studies are needed to better understand this.

In Australia the government say that wearing a mask and physical distance is still important, “It may take time for everyone who wants a Covid-19 vaccination to get one. A vaccine that is 95% effective means that about 1 out of 20 people who get it may not have protection from getting the illness,” they advise online.

Some people never show symptoms so vaccinations are important. There is a common confusion between pre-symptomatic spread (people who spread the virus before showing symptoms) and asymptomatic spread (spreading the virus by someone who never shows any symptoms). The former is one of the hallmarks of the pandemic, the latter much less common. What is important to understand is that everyone agrees vaccines reduce transmission.

So why wouldn’t you take the vaccine that are tested to be safe and federally approved? I read comments like “it’s poison” and “does not work” on social media, but the science and three stage testing, prior to receiving government approval, dispel all that.

An Israeli study found that from 100 vaccinated patients, those who received both doses of the vaccine did not become carriers of the virus and cannot spread it further.

Israel is one of the most vaccinated countries in the world and has compiled comprehensive data.

A new study has also found a reduction in transmission rates even after the first dose. Those who test positive for Covid-19 showed that twelve or more days after taking the first dose have a viral load that’s four times lower than those who have not been vaccinated. Those receiving the vaccine became far less of a Covid transmission risk even before receiving their second dose.

Being less of a risk would allow more freedom to travel with significantly lower transmissions, especially when coupled with mask wearing, social distancing and frequent hand washing.

University Professor Cohen linked to the Israeli study and member of the official Health Ministry Advisory Committee on coronavirus vaccines, says…

“This shows that indeed, besides reducing symptoms and hopefully mortality, the vaccine may facilitate reaching some kind of herd immunity, allowing the partial protection of the weak or non-immunised.”

The question to open borders to vaccinated visitors is now looking more and more likely as the risk to do so is manageable.


ANDREW J WOOD

Andrew J Wood was born in Yorkshire England, he is a professional hotelier, Skalleague and travel writer. Andrew has 48 years of hospitality and travel experience. He is a hotel graduate of Napier University, Edinburgh. Andrew is a past Director of Skål International (SI), National President SI Thailand and is currently President of SI Bangkok and a VP of both SI Thailand and SI Asia. He is a regular guest lecturer at various Universities in Thailand including Assumption University’s Hospitality School and the Japan Hotel School in Tokyo.

The content of this article reflects the writer and does not necessarily reflect the editorial stance of The Thaiger.

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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

79 new cases today-COVID-19 Update

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79 new cases today-COVID-19 Update | The Thaiger

Today, the Thai government is reporting 79 new cases of Covid-19, with 65 locally-transmitted, and 14 imported, raising the total to 26,241 since the pandemic began. 1 new death has been reported, raising the total amount of deaths to 85. The new infections, which are now in the double-digits, shows Thailand’s Covid situation as improving according to the assistant spokeswoman for the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration, Panprapa Yongtrakul.

“The two-digit level of new cases found at hospitals and communities shows that the local Covid-19 situation is under control.”

The CCSA reports that 43 of the 65 local infections were found in communities with 22 of the 65 found in hospitals across 4 provinces.

Samut Sakhon province, the source of the second wave of Covid in the Kingdom, reported 77% of the new cases. Of the 50 cases found in the province, 38 were found in communities and 12 were found at hospitals.

Pathum Thani reported 8 new cases, with 3 being found at hospitals, and 5 in the community. Bangkok reported 6 new cases at hospitals and Chon Buri reported 1 infection found at a hospital. 12 of the 14 imported infections were quarantined arrivals from Russia, The United Arab Emirates, The United States, Slovenia, South Africa, Germany, Libya and Italy.

79 new cases today-COVID-19 Update | News by The Thaiger

The other 2 imported cases were that of Thai women, who ellegedly returned from Myanmar illegally through a natural border crossing in Tak province, despite the government closing off natural border crossings after the February coup by the military in Myanmar.

Covid-19 cases rose worldwide by 446,747 over the past 24 hours to 116.21 million. The worldwide death toll rose by 9,955 to 2.58 million. The US still has the most cases at 29.53 million, rising by 68,321 over the past 24 hours, and the most deaths at 533,636, rising by 1,993 over the last 24 hours.

In light of the recent downturn in reported cases, Samut Sakhon has recently reopened 22 of its wet markets. However, the seafood market where the second wave of the Covid outbreak began, is not one of them, and it is not yet known when that might reopen.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Thai Health Minister to chair panel on travel bubbles, vaccine passports

Maya Taylor

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Thai Health Minister to chair panel on travel bubbles, vaccine passports | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Markus Winkler on Unsplash

Thailand’s Public Health Minister, Anutin Charnvirakul, will chair a meeting on Monday, in which a vaccine passport scheme and potential travel bubbles will be discussed. Anutin says those who’ve been inoculated against Covid-19 will be issued with a book to confirm their vaccination. It’s hoped this will make international travel easier, as well as boosting the public’s confidence and helping life return to some kind of normality.

“The Public Health Ministry is making preparations to bring life back to normal, restore businesses and revive the Thai economy.”

A number of groups and industry representatives have added their voices to growing calls for a vaccine passport policy. The Joint Standing Committee on Commerce, Industry and Banking is urging the government to implement the scheme without further delay, while also calling for private companies in Thailand to be allowed purchase and distribute vaccines.

The Tourism Authority of Thailand is also pushing for a vaccine passport policy, while the Tourism Ministry has urged the Health Ministry to approve one. Meanwhile the PM, Prayut Chan-o-cha has asked the Foreign Ministry to carry out a study on vaccine passports, adding that the jury is still out as to their effectiveness. They also have their critics, primarily among rights’ groups and doctors, who argue that there is not yet enough evidence that vaccination prevents transmission.

At Monday’s meeting of the National Communicable Diseases Committee, the Anutin-led panel will also discuss the idea of travel bubbles. Thailand has been considering entering into reciprocal travel arrangements with countries with a high take-up of Covid-19 vaccines.

Meanwhile, Anutin says the public must continue with the practice of mask-wearing, noting that the number of Thais doing so has recently slipped. He says that recent data shows the number of people wearing masks has dropped below 80%, compared to 90% last month.

SOURCE: Nation Thailand

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