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First doses of AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 vaccine arrive in Vietnam

The Saigon Times

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HCMC – The first 117,600 doses of the Covid-19 vaccine produced by British drugmaker AstraZeneca in association with the University of Oxford arrived at the Tan Son Nhat International Airport in HCMC today, February 24, to meet the country’s high demand.

A representative of Vietnam Vaccine JSC (VNVC) said the batch was part of the 30 million doses of the vaccine that VNVC had earlier ordered. It signed a contract to import the vaccine with AstraZeneca last November, the local media reported.

The Ministry of Health has facilitated VNVC to quickly import the vaccine as the pandemic has spread to 13 cities and provinces over the last 27 days.

The ministry yesterday announced 11 groups of individuals who will be prioritized to receive the first doses of the Covid-19 vaccines, including health care workers; those involved in the fight against the pandemic, including members of steering committees, employees at quarantine centers and journalists; diplomatic and customs officials; and police officers and soldiers among others.

VNVC is the unique unit in Vietnam to receive AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 vaccine. Its three super-cold warehouses in HCMC, Danang and Hanoi can accommodate three million doses of the vaccine.

Besides the 30 million doses of the Covid-19 vaccine ordered by VNVC, Covax Facility has committed to providing Vietnam with some 4.9 million doses free of charge in the first half of this year and 33 million doses in the third quarter.

The Ministry of Health on February 1 approved the use of AstraZeneca’s vaccine ChAdOx in Vietnam.

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