Thai Health Ministry insists Chinese vaccine is effective, despite social media claims

PHOTO: Thai Government Public Relations Department

Thailand’s Public Health Ministry insists the Covid-19 vaccine developed by Chinese firm Sinovac, is effective in protecting recipients against the virus. Dr. Supakit Sirilak from the Department of Medical Science was responding to a claim on social media from a man who says he took a rapid test after receiving the CoronaVac vaccine and it showed he’d developed no immunity whatsoever. Supakit says rapid tests would not pick up on immunity levels and that vaccinated people who want to check they’re protected should only do so through standard laboratory tests.

“The immunity develops 2 weeks after you have had your shots. However, the level of immunity differs based on the virus variants. I am not surprised to see that the rapid test could not detect the immunity because it couldn’t reach the point where the immunity is found, which is spike protein. It needs to be done under standard laboratory conditions with a proven method.”

According to a report in the Bangkok Post, Supakit says he himself received the Chinese vaccine in February and developed immunity 2 weeks later. He adds that the Sinovac jab offers a level of immunity of 114 against the original Covid-19 strain, but that drops to less than half against the mutated strain now spreading in Thailand.

Further research into CoronaVac’s efficacy in Chile indicates a near 48% increase in immunity 14 days after the second dose has been administered, but that increases to over 95% after 70 days. According to the Chilean research, the vaccine is 67% effective against symptomatic infection and 80% effective at preventing death.

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Meanwhile, Opas Karnkawinpong from Thailand’s Department of Disease Control says he’s confident case numbers will begin to drop over the next 2 weeks, if people adhere to the government’s disease prevention measures, which include a ban on mass gatherings. Pubs, clubs, and other nightlife venues around the country have also been ordered to close, with a ban on the sale of alcohol in restaurants.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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