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Coronavirus Vaccines

Government says Sinovac works, despite claims of lower efficacy against variants



PHOTO: Flickr/Emanuel Borges da Silva

Amid growing calls for more mRNA doses to combat the spread of the Delta variant, the Thai government continues to defend the Sinovac vaccine. The Bangkok Post reports that the government plans to purchase another 12 million doses of the Chinese vaccine, citing good results from a study of people fully vaccinated with Sinovac.

However, the public is calling on the government to procure more mRNA vaccines, such as Pfizer and Moderna, which are widely seen as more effective against the highly contagious Delta variant. At a press conference yesterday, the Public Health Ministry addressed the issue of the vaccine’s efficacy, with Chawetsan Namwat from the Department of Disease Control saying all vaccines given World Health Organisation approval can reduce severe symptoms and death. He says the focus now should be on achieving mass vaccination as quickly as possible.

“We need to provide vaccines to as many people as possible. The combination vaccine is the answer to administering the vaccines en masse and enhancing people’s immunity faster than a single vaccine with 2 doses. We are going to order 12 million more doses of Sinovac to combine with the limited amount of AstraZeneca.”

According to Taweesap Siraprapasiri the Public Health Ministry’s expert, a study on the efficacy of Sinovac and AstraZeneca has just been carried out on more than 3,900 medical workers around the country. The results show that Sinovac’s efficacy at preventing serious illness and death is 98%, with 72% efficacy in preventing infection. AstraZeneca showed efficacy of 96% in preventing infection following 2 doses administered 14 days apart. That fell to 88% after just 1 dose.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post


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