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Home Lao

Vietnam eyes inoculating children against COVID-19 in late October with Pfizer, Cuban vaccines

HANOI (Vietnam News/ANN)  -- The Ministry of Health will begin vaccinating children aged between 12 and 17 years old against COVID-19 later this month, before expanding the vaccination to younger age groups, deputy health minister Tran Van Thuấn said on Saturday.
Thuan unveiled the plans when replying to voters' opinions on the issue during an online voters meeting held by the delegation of National Assembly deputies from HCM City, with the participation of President Nguyen Xuan Phuc.

A mother and two children in masks and protective gowns returning from severely COVID-19-hit HCM City to their hometown, the Central Highlands Province of Lam Dnog on Saturday. --VNS Photo

According to Nguyen Thanh Hung, Director of Children’s Hospital No.1 in HCM City, about 20,000 children contracted COVID-19, and even though the danger posed by the virus to younger people is less significant compared to adults, the risks to children with underlying health issues or obesity are still high.
HCM City’s residents are naturally worried about their children’s safety when the southern city expects to resume in-person learning starting January 2022, while the COVID-19 strategy has switched to adaptation and mitigation rather than total elimination.
A large amount of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine doses would arrive in Vietnam in the near future (out of its order for 51 million doses, slated to arrive mostly in this quarter, with 20 million reserved for children), the health official noted, adding that following a request made by President Nguyen Xuan Phuc during his recent visit to Cuba, Vietnam is now waiting for Cuba's data on child vaccines for consideration.
Pfizer's vaccines have been given by US Centre for Disease Control and Prevention for children aged 12-17, and the US company is seeking approval for use in children aged 5-11 with lower dosages.
Cuba has developed two homegrown vaccines, Abdala for adults, and Soberana for children. Vietnam has signed a deal to buy 5 million doses of the former, and a memorandum of understanding for the purchase of five million doses of Soberana once it has sufficient information from Cuba to give conditional approval.
Thuan said there would be no shortage of vaccine resources between now and the end of the year, with a minimum of 120 million doses expected to arrive.
It is estimated that within 2021, Vietnam will see more than 70 per cent of its adult population injected with one vaccine dose.
The nation has so far distributed 56 million doses of vaccines. As of October 8, some 51.4 million doses had been administered, with the number of adults getting one shot reaching 52.3 percent of the population.


(Latest Update October 12, 2021)


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