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Thai people not given choice which Covid-19 vaccine they receive

Neill Fronde



PHOTO: Thailand's lack of vaccine choices. via

It’s free but you don’t get a choice. Thai Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul announced that people will not be given a choice of which Covid-19 vaccine they receive. Amid widespread criticism of the slow rollout of vaccination in Thailand, the health minister discussed the process of vaccines being approved for distribution within Thailand. Many are concerned about possible side effects from the different vaccine options.

The minister stated that people reporting for vaccination will be injected with the most suitable option available for their demographic. No vaccine choice will be given in free inoculation centres. The health minister stressed that people will receive an immunising vaccine and that every Covid-19 vaccine that is administered in Thailand is first inspected by a vaccine safety committee.

Currently, the Sinovac vaccine is the most used jab in Thailand, being prioritised for medical workers, frontline workers, and immigration officers. Sinovac required two doses spaced 3 weeks apart. The Pfizer vaccine is still in the evaluation process, though the health minister commented that if and when it is approved for use in Thailand that vaccine would be be the ideal choice for young people from 12 to 18 years old, as it has been tested to be safe for children over 12.

The minister said that Thailand is prepared to register Covid-19 vaccines by all different manufacturers and that the government is not hindering any specific brand. But the process before vaccines can be administered within the borders involves the manufacturer registering their vaccine by submitting necessary documents to the Food and Drug Administration. The government then evaluates the vaccine and once it is deemed safe will approve the registration.

Currently, only Sinovac and AstraZeneca are available in Thailand, though many makers are pushing to get through the FDA approval process. The Thai government aims to lock down commitments from these two vaccine makers to confirm a speedy delivery timeline. The problem of importing vaccines in large quantities is that the jabs are needed worldwide including the home countries of the vaccine producers, which often get priority before exporting.

A second Chinese vaccine producer, Sinopharm, just had a meeting with the Public Health Minister but have not begun negotiations for import yet. The American vaccine Moderna is also working its way through the registration process, having submitted the documents to the FDA and awaiting approval now.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post


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  1. Avatar


    Saturday, May 1, 2021 at 10:34 am

    Most Thai’s don’t need a choice anyway. Just follow the rules. Military wants to take over my country? Yes sir please. Following stupid rules all day. Making up new useless rules and excuses be my guest.

  2. Avatar


    Saturday, May 1, 2021 at 11:32 am

    There’s only 2 vaccine i would take. Pfizer and moderna. The other ones i don’t trust. I live in Sweden and many people have problem from Astra.

  3. Avatar


    Saturday, May 1, 2021 at 11:33 am

    These vaccines have been approved for use in many countries, why does Thailand need its FDA to approve? jobs or the boys I guess

  4. Avatar

    Be happy and healthy

    Saturday, May 1, 2021 at 11:35 am

    12 year olds getting a vaccine even though they have a 100% chance of survival. This is so fkd up! What a clown world.

    Get the old and weak vaccinated and any one who stay afraid of covid. Statistically like the flu, thais just aren’t as vulnerable to covid as the obese west.

    Thaiger, please report the story of 23 yr old girl who died and the family recorded the conversation with doctor who told the family to not tell anyone.

    This needs to be covered!

    You are complicit in this crime against humanity by not reporting it.

    And why is a 23 yr old getting vaccinated against a virus she has 99.999999% chance of survival if contacting it.

    Why is there no antibody testing? If I already have immunity to covid why do I need a vaccine?

  5. Avatar


    Saturday, May 1, 2021 at 11:42 am

    Why is no one talking about how Sinovac is a poorly effective vaccine with a low effective rate of 50 – 60% compared to the effective rate of 90%+ with the American, Russian, and UK vaccines.
    Moreover, Sinovac proves near useless against the UK strand of Covid, which currently, is the big killer and problem in Thailand. Yet Thailand still insists to give out Sinovac vaccines?
    And just to top it all off, the public now has no choice between a good vaccine and a crap vaccine. Fuck that shit, provide what’s best for the public. Buy your shitty submarines and boats for ridiculous prices, but don’t mess with people’s health and do a half-arsed job about it for once, please Thailand.

  6. Avatar

    Dynamo Dave

    Saturday, May 1, 2021 at 12:19 pm

    ‘It’s free but you don’t get a choice. . .’
    Oh, come, Thailand! Do you imagine for one minute that people queuing for vaccination in the US or UK – or anywhere! – would be offered a choice? Of course not. They have to trust the health authorities to have a safe vaccine available – just the one of them, not a bleedin’ choice.

    And, re ‘Many are concerned about possible side effects from the different vaccine options’, simple research will tell you whether the vaccine being used – probably the A-Z one – is worth the risk. Follow the majority of rest of the world, for heaven’s sake . . . they’re not complaining about lack of choice.

  7. Avatar


    Saturday, May 1, 2021 at 1:23 pm

    Avoid the Russian and Chinese vaccines! There’s a reason why their own people don’t even want to use them. Information on them is scarce and what is out there are most likely OVER exaggerated to make it look good.

  8. Avatar


    Saturday, May 1, 2021 at 2:55 pm

    @rnb big killer in Thailand. 150 deaths is 12 months scares you and is a big killer. If you’re afraid of covid, wait till you hear about the flu or dengue fever which kills 15,000 every year in Thailand.

    You’re an idiot.

  9. Avatar


    Saturday, May 1, 2021 at 3:40 pm

    Nothing surprising, it is normal in almost all countries vaccinating.
    No need to choose, they have the same purpose.

  10. Avatar


    Saturday, May 1, 2021 at 6:00 pm

    from the information available it seems that the best vaccines are Pfizer and Moderna, followed by Astrazeneca which, although it has many side effects, guarantees good protection, the Chinese vaccine is the worst available today because it is less than 50% effective, the latest studies on the Russian vaccine they say that the adenovirus used as a vector is capable of replicating in the human body.
    China and Russia were the first to make the vaccine but they are far behind in the vaccination campaign, if Russians and Chinese do not trust the vaccine produced by their dictators there is a reason!

  11. Avatar


    Saturday, May 1, 2021 at 7:06 pm

    In Brazil the Chinese Vaccine Sinovac and Sputnik failed completly. So why the hell should people play with their health? Biontech/Pfizer had the best results so let the people choose whom they trust. The reports are out and Sinovac failed thats a fact!

  12. Avatar

    Clive g

    Saturday, May 1, 2021 at 8:02 pm

    @luca – Pfizer and Moderna only appears safe because they refuse to partake in the side-effects safety Reporting ( vaers)

  13. Avatar

    Barry Betts

    Saturday, May 1, 2021 at 8:08 pm

    Remember my Thai friends you’re amazing government saying with the vaccine you get what you are given and you have no choice… The Thai people are always told what to do so they are use to this… I really feel sorry for the people of Thai and if their not happy they can’t complain so same same all the time!!

  14. Avatar

    Toby Andrews

    Saturday, May 1, 2021 at 8:22 pm

    Most are not given the opportunity to receive any vaccine.

  15. Avatar


    Saturday, May 1, 2021 at 9:18 pm

    Pointless to have a choice of vaccines,as it is still early days,as no one can assure which vaccine is most effective.Perhaps,only after several years of research and testings,then vaccines can better fight the virus.Furthermore,after vaccination infection can still happen,depending on many factors plus an individual’s immunity. A vaccine is not a cure,as it is to help to fight the virus for people with weak immunity.

  16. Avatar


    Saturday, May 1, 2021 at 10:05 pm

    People in America for the longest of time didn’t have a choice either. Not until late in the process when the vaccines were distributed to the pharmacies was a choice available. Some of them would let you know what vaccine they were using which allowed you to decide which pharmacy to visit. I did that, choose Pfizer over Modena but it required me to travel a little further to do so.

  17. Avatar


    Saturday, May 1, 2021 at 10:31 pm

    I’m not getting vaccinated but the elder and the ones with auto immune diseases should

  18. Avatar

    J West

    Sunday, May 2, 2021 at 9:38 am

    Don’t worry. Two vaccines from Chna are in the pipeline. That’s reassuring. No ? Yikes !!

  19. Avatar


    Sunday, May 2, 2021 at 12:50 pm

    The main issue is that as usual this military sort-of-government has chosen the less
    effective and most controversial vaccines ! Anyone surprised ?

  20. Avatar

    Mike Texas

    Sunday, May 2, 2021 at 10:18 pm

    Americans don’t have a choice either. I doubt many, if any, country is providing its citizens with a choice. This isn’t a fast food restaurant that you are lining up in to place an order. This article only makes vaccinating the populous even harder because it leads people to believe they aren’t getting something they should have and that others are getting. The second half of the article was informative but the headline and first part (that most read) could have been written in a much more balanced manor but then it wouldn’t have pandered to the fears of people and gotten as much attention. Website hits trumps better journalism…

    At best they could do what some in America have done, ask which vaccine is being administered at a certain location and if you don’t want it take your chance at going somewhere else – the risk being that it is the same vaccine but not you have to wait hours, days, or weeks to get your place back in the line.

  21. Avatar


    Monday, May 3, 2021 at 1:39 pm

    @Hasse –
    In France too.
    One french doctor found the cause : the vaccine must be injected in the muscle but sometimes the needle is inside a vein of the muscle, sendind the vaccine directly inside the blood stream.
    The solution : when the needle is inside the muscle, suck a little before to ensure no blood is coming in the seringue, so not from a vein. If no blood, ok for injection.
    The french Health Minister (Veran) has removed this caution to don’t alarm the population.
    Today (apr21) 75% of french citizen refuse the Astrazeneca vaccine including myself.
    Wait and see for the russian Sputnik vaccine.

  22. Avatar


    Tuesday, May 11, 2021 at 1:35 am

    As far as vaccine “approval” is concern, it’s obvious a matter of the government “saving face” since the ‘Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson and Johnson ivaccines are not currently unavailable, or unaffordable. The questionable Chinese stuff is, along with Thailand’s own concoction. The arrogance to even consider that “safety” is the reason for not approving vaccines made in the West , is obviously politically driven.

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Neill is a journalist from the United States with 10 years broadcasting experience and national news and magazine publications. He graduated with a degree in journalism and communications from the University of California and has been living in Thailand since 2014.

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