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Vietnam to order COVID-19 vaccines from the US, UK and Russia

14:09 | 22/09/2020

The Ministry of Health has ordered three COVID-19 vaccine candidates from Russia, the UK, the US. The country’s vaccine research and production speed has also been accelerated.

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Vietnamese researchers testing COVID-19 vaccine candidate on experimental mice (Photo: VNE)

Deputy Minister of Health Tran Van Thuan on September 21 stated that Vietnam was pulling out effort to purchase and produce COVID-19 vaccines. Vaccine availability was dependent on the manufacturer's clinical trials progress.

Thuan did not detail the number of vaccine doses Vietnam ordered from abroad.

COVID-19 vaccine production in Vietnam is underway, with Vabiotech, Polyvac, Ivac, Nanogen are the four manufacturers involve. Thuan commented these units had "very positive prospects". All the Vietnam’s COVID-19 vaccines candidates are ensured to fully comply with strict regulations, and there’s no shortcut regarding trial phases. The vaccines are expected to be available in late 2021.

“The Ministry of Health will do our utmost with the vaccine production to serve the country’s anti-COVID-19 effort as soon as possible”, the Deputy Minister said, adding that the Ministry of Health had worked with the US’s Pfizer firm on the availability vaccines.

Vaccine production is currently a top priority of all countries worldwide, in the hope of preventing and stamping out the novel coronavirus, bringing back the normal life in the nearest time. “Without a vaccine, it’d be difficult to live a normal life as before”, Thuan stressed.

30 countries are racing in the quest for COVID-19 vaccine, with the US, Russia, the UK, and China are the in the forefront. At least 9 vaccines candidates are in the phase 3 of clinical trials – the final testing stage.

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Foreign nationals entering Vietnam on commercial flights will have to take two COVID-19 tests that cost them around VND1.468 million (US$63).

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Jasmine Le