The first batch of AstraZeneca vaccine via Covax mechanism arrived in Hanoi’s Noi Bai International Airport Thursday morning. The 811,200 doses have been transferred to the National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology (NIHE) for storage, awaiting the Health Ministry’s distribution.
Covax, a global mechanism for developing, manufacturing and procuring Covid-19 vaccine candidates that help member countries access vaccines as they become available, earlier pledged to provide Vietnam with 30 million doses of AstraZeneca’s vaccine.
It planned to deliver 1.37 million doses on March 25. But due to a lack of supply, only 811,200 doses were made available in the first batch.
In Vietnam, officials have asked the private sector to step in after their Covax supplies were slashed. The country also seeks to cooperate with China, India and Russia to develop Covid-19 vaccines and inoculate prioritized groups, Health Minister Nguyen Thanh Long said Wednesday.
Vietnam in February received about 117,000 AstraZeneca vaccine doses from 30 million doses it has ordered from the producer, and started the mass vaccination campaign on March 8.
Over 50,000 Vietnamese, mainly frontline workers in the Covid-19 fight, have received their first Covid-19 vaccine shots.