Vietnam will begin offering Coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccinations in March, with frontline health workers and vulnerable citizens first on the list, according to state media, Tuoi Tre on Monday.
“The first wave of COVID-19 vaccinations, prioritising frontline medical workers and high-risk groups, will begin in March right after the first batch of the AstraZeneca vaccine arrives and passes quality checks,’’ state-run newspaper said.
Vietnam said that it expects to receive 60 million vaccine doses in 2021, 30 million of which will be provided by the World Health Organisation’s COVAX plan.
On Jan. 30, Vietnam formally approved the AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine for use on its citizens.
The nation will receive 204,000 doses of the vaccine on Feb. 28.
In preparation for the vaccines, three freezer units have been set up in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, and Da Nang, each capable of holding three million COVID-19 vaccine doses, local outlet VnExpress said.
Vietnam is also working to create its own vaccines and hopes to begin offering inoculations from its Nanocovax vaccine in May.
Vietnam’s battle against the coronavirus is seen as a success story.
But it is now dealing with a significant outbreak, with more than 700 cases confirmed since 100 infections were announced on Jan. 28, most of which were linked to the Hai Duong factory cluster and another smaller outbreak in Quang Ninh province.
On Feb. 2, Vietnam’s Health Ministry confirmed the more contagious British coronavirus variant is fueling its recent outbreak.
To date, Vietnam has officially recorded 2,383 coronavirus cases and 35 deaths