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Coronavirus Vaccines

Thailand to start offering booster doses, vaccinating children from next year

Maya Taylor

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PHOTO: Bangkok Metropolitan Administration

The Public Health Ministry says that from next year, Thailand will begin offering booster doses to fully vaccinated people, as well as vaccinating children. According to a Nation Thailand report, Dr Opas Karnkawinpong from the Department of Disease Control says research shows that the immunity granted by 2 doses of vaccine, regardless of the type, will decline over time. For this reason, a third, or booster shot, will be necessary.

Opas says AstraZeneca has already agreed to increase the number of doses supplied to Thailand from next month. The kingdom currently receives between 5 and 6 million doses a month during the period June – August. From September, that will increase to 7.2 million doses.

Meanwhile, the National Vaccine Board says that by next year, there should be at least 120 million doses of various Covid-19 vaccines available. This will include mRNA, inactivated, protein, and viral vector vaccines, a decision already approved by the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration. The NVA plans to import 50 million doses of the Pfizer vaccine, along with 50 million AstraZeneca doses. Opas says that if a second-generation vaccine is found to be safe and effective, it could arrive as a second batch.

Thailand is also developing its own mRNA vaccine, which has shown an efficacy rate of 94% in phase 1 human trials, similar to that of the Pfizer vaccine. Researchers are calling on the government to fund the vaccine’s development and relax regulations to ensure it can be rolled out ahead of next year’s Songkran holiday.

SOURCE: Nation Thailand

 

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