No fewer than 500,000 doses of Pfizer vaccine, from the 1.5 million doses donated to Thailand by the United States, will be administered to frontline medical personnel, said Dr. Rungruang Kitpati, spokesman for the Ministry of Public Health, today (Sunday).
He dismissed as totally untrue a report, published on social media by a doctor who raised a question about the distribution of donated Pfizer vaccine, claiming that only 200,000 doses will be available for Thai medics.
The spokesman said that the distribution will be managed by a committee, comprising the Public Health Ministry and other agencies concerned and that vaccinations will start in August.
The Pfizer vaccine will be a booster shot for medics who are already fully inoculated, said Dr. Rungruang, adding that some the medics have already been given AstraZeneca vaccine as booster jab.
Research, conducted by virologist Dr. Yong Poovorawan, shows that those given two Sinovac doses and one AstraZeneca booster shot have higher levels of antibodies than people given two AstraZeneca doses, one dose of Sinovac and a second dose of AZ or two doses of Pfizer.
Dr. Rungruang also refuted a claim that frontline medics had been forced to accept AstraZeneca booster jabs.
He disclosed that the 20 million doses of Pfizer vaccine, ordered by the government to be administered to people free of charge, are expected in Thailand in October.
He reminded the public not to fall prey to fake news or claims by “con men” offering advance bookings for the Pfizer vaccine, assuring that people at high-risk or those in high risk areas will be treated as a top priority and there will be no privileged treatment of VIPs.