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More than 24,000 Vietnamese frontliners inoculated with Covid-19 vaccine

Malie Nguyen Malie Nguyen

Dieuhuong270198@gmail.com

March 18, 2021 | 11:54

On March 17, more 3.359 people in Vietnam were administered the Covid-19 vaccine, raising the tally of recipients to 24.054.

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The vaccine has been given to 12,068 people in Hai Duong, Hanoi (3,768), Hung Yen (2,492), Bac Ninh (1,332), Bac Giang (2,281), Hai Phong (205), HCMC (884), Gia Lai (200), Long An (204), Danang (117), Hoa Binh (152) and Khanh Hoa (105), Vnexpress reported.

The prioritized groups receiving the vaccine are medical workers directly treating Covid-19 patients, those involve in taking samples, testing, contact tracing, members of Covid-19 community groups, and members of the Steering Committees for disease prevention and control.

Viet Tiep Friendship Hospital in Hai Phong, Khanh Hoa Hospital for Tropical Diseases, Da Nang Lung Hospital, Gia Lai Field Hospital, Dong Thap Muoi General Hospital, and Ho Chi Minh Hospital for Tropical Diseases completed their vaccination campaign in this phase.

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A medical worker holds a vial of Covid-19 vaccine AstraZeneca against a file with the name and address of a person that is about to get vaccinated in Hanoi. Photo: VnExpress.

According to Health Minister Nguyen Thanh Long, among vaccine recipients, there were 4,078 cases experiencing common reactions, 5 cases suffering level 2 anaphylaxis, and one case suffering level 3 anaphylaxis. All of them were timely treated and now in stable health conditions.

Under the Health Ministry’s guidance, there are four levels of anaphylaxis.

According to the Minister, 16 cases were reported developing severe reactions after administration. However, the Immunization Council re-evaluated and identified only 5 cases of level 2 anaphylaxis and one case of level 3 anaphylaxis.

“The person developing level 3 anaphylaxis did not receive the emergency first-aid as guided by the Ministry. We sent experts to this vaccination site to re-guide it so that the vaccination will be properly implemented in the future”, Long said.

The Health Ministry also ordered all vaccination sites to thoroughly monitor vaccine recipients’ health.

The vaccine used in the ongoing vaccination rollout in Vietnam is developed and manufactured by the British-Swedish firm AstraZeneca in collaboration with Oxford University. The first batch of 117,600 vaccine doses arrived in Vietnam on February 24. An additional 5 million doses from global vaccine access mechanism Covax, UNICEF, and Vietnam Vaccine Joint Stock Company’s purchasing contract are expected to arrive in March and April.

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A nurse is about to be injected with a Covid-19 vaccine shot produced by AstraZeneca at the HCMC Hospital for Tropical Diseases. Photo: VnExpress.

AstraZeneca vaccine has been approved for use in more than 70 countries and territories. At least 17 countries including France, Germany, Denmark, Italy, Indonesia, and Thailand have suspended or delayed the use of the vaccine following reports of severe cases of blood clots in people who have been injected with it.

The World Health Organization has called on governments around the world to continue their vaccination campaigns.

The European medicines regulator, which is reviewing the issue, will announce its findings Thursday after assessing whether the vaccine contributed to blood clotting in recipients. It said it continues to believe that the benefits of the vaccine outweigh the risks, Reuters reported Tuesday.

Vietnam has ordered 30 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine.

The country will also receive another 4.1 million AstraZeneca doses under the Covax facility by April. It is also negotiating the supply of Covid-19 vaccines with manufacturers in the U.S., Russia, and China.

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Malie Nguyen