Following a series of last-minute announcements from a number of foreign embassies, over 1 thousand American, Australian, Indian, and New Zealand nationals in Bangkok lined up to be vaccinated on Sunday. According to a Coconuts report, foreign residents queued for up to 4 hours to receive a dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine, in what has been described as a “one-off” event.
A number of expats who attended spoke to Coconuts and described the event as badly organised and chaotic, but nevertheless, it worked to get hundreds of people their first dose of a Covid-19 vaccine. According to some people, there were no instructions given and the wait was long, with chairs continually re-arranged in no logical order, resulting in some latecomers being vaccinated ahead of people who’d been there longer.
There were signs bearing QR codes, with no instructions in English on how to use them, and reports of very few staff available to assist. Despite this, Randy Oda, a 65 year old US national, was in a forgiving mood and just grateful to get the vaccine.
“In general, I’m ecstatic about getting the vaccine. Although the process was a bit confusing, most were excited and perhaps a bit anxious to have this special opportunity.”
Coconuts reports that registration for the event ran from Friday evening to Saturday afternoon, with a series of last-minute announcements from various embassies appearing on social media. Places were limited and offered on a first-come, first-served basis, with reports that some embassies were not notified of their vaccine allocation until after they had closed for business on Friday evening.
It’s understood there are no plans to repeat the event, but walk-in registration for foreign residents over the age of 75 began at Bangkok’s Bang Sue Grand Station yesterday. In addition, Tanee Sangrat from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs says an online platform where foreigners can register for vaccination will launch at the end of the month.
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