Thailand pulmonologist COVID-19

(Photo by JOEL SAGET / AFP)

Thailand will have procured up to 61 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines by the end of this year, which should be sufficient to cope with the pandemic, said Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha today (Tuesday), as he revealed the timeline for vaccine procurements.

317,000 doses of the Sinovac vaccine from China were received in February, 800,000 doses in March and a million doses in April, with another batch of a million doses scheduled for delivery in May.

Negotiations also are under way for more Sinovac vaccine, which are yet to be approved by Chinese government, said the prime minister.

Between 4 and 6 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine, to be produced locally by Siam Bioscience, are to be delivered in June, he said, and the amount will increase throughout the rest of the year, until 61 million doses will have procured.

“This is not too late or too little,” said the prime minister, adding that talks are being held with Pfizer for 5 to 10 million doses, expected between July and the end of the year.

As for the procurement of the Favipiravir anti-viral drug, he said the government will purchase an additional 3.5 million tablets, which are expected to be delivered to Thailand in three batches – two million in May, one million in June and 500,000 tablets in July.

The prime minister also said that he has instructed all provinces to be ready to set up field hospitals and appealed to all COVID-19 patients to cooperate fully with medical personnel and to observe health safety measures strictly.

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