NONTHABURI, Oct 5 (TNA) — The National Vaccine Institute has initially ordered COVID-19 vaccines for 50% of the Thai population and the reservation would cost the government 2.93 billion baht this month.
Dr Panprapa Yongtrakul, spokesperson of the Ministry of Public Health, said the National Vaccine Committee approved the early reservation of COVID-19 vaccines for half the Thai population. Vaccine reservation for 20% of the population would be done through COVAX and that for 30% of the population would be directly sealed with manufacturers. Each person would need two doses of a vaccine, Dr Panprapa said.
Dr Nakorn Premsri, director of the National Vaccine Institute, said the institute’s management verbally ordered vaccines from 10 manufacturers that entered the Phase 3 of their vaccine testing but had yet to place money for the reservation.
Deputy Prime Minister/Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul who heads the National Vaccine Committee can exercise Section 18 of the National Vaccine Security Act to approve the reservation sum worth 2.93 billion baht. The money must be placed within this month.
The first group of people to be vaccinated will be medical personnel and next recipients will be chosen based on the interest of public health, Dr Nakorn said.
Meanwhile, the Center for COVID-19 Situation Administration reported five new cases of the coronavirus disease 2019. All were quarantined arrivals, raising the total to 3,590.
Of the total, 3,390 recovered and 141 patients were at hospitals. The death toll remained unchanged at 59.
The five new cases included two from India. One is a male Indian auditor aged 27 who arrived on the same flight as six previously confirmed cases and the other is a male Indian chef aged 33.
Another case is a 34-year-old Portuguese steward of chartered flights who was from Portugal. He landed in India on Sept 18, in Malaysian on Sept 24 and in Thailand on Sept 30.
Another case is a Bahraini businessman, 50, who has a Thai wife. The other case is a Thai businesswoman, 55, who arrived from Japan. (TNA)