Thailand deploys fourth dose of COVID-19 vaccine in 10 provinces

Thailand plans to vaccinate a fourth dose of 2.5 million people, including Thais and foreigners, in 10 provinces, four of which depend on tourism.

As the Southeast Asian country prepares to reopen its airports next month, the Thai government is pushing for a fourth deployment of a COVID-19 vaccine to locals as a travel vanguard. .edge.

On January 23, Ms. Ratchada Denadirek, deputy spokesperson of the Thai government, said that the Department of Disease Control (DDC) under the Thai Ministry of Health plans to vaccinate 2.5 million people with the fourth dose of the vaccine. .. 10 provinces including Thai residents and foreigners, 4 of which are dependent on tourism (Phuket, Surat Thani, Krabi and Phang Nga) and 6 other tourist destinations with high infection rates. High disease. The infection rate is relatively high (Bangkok, Chonburi, Samut Prakan, Nonthaburi, Kanchanaburi and Pathum Thani).

The department said the vaccine will be used in the fourth dose of AstraZeneca and Pfizer/BioNTech, as well as in people who have received the third dose for at least 3 months.

Previously, the agency only planned to use the COVID-19 vaccine for healthcare and public health workers and vulnerable populations.

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Thailand is one of the few countries that is rolling out a fourth dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, including Chile and Israel. To date, the country has administered more than 800,000 doses of the fourth vaccine, mainly for health workers. high-risk groups.

Thai officials said the implementation of the plan would support efforts to keep local communities safe and reopen the country’s tourism industry.

From February 1, Thailand will resume the “Test & Go” tourism program, which attracted about 350,000 tourists in the two months before it was suspended due to concerns about infection risks. Robust spread of Omicron variants.

Thailand recorded 7,139 new COVID-19 cases and 13 deaths in the past 24 hours, bringing the country’s total infections since the start of the year to 2,384,639 cases and 22,045 deaths. disease.

To date, about 17% of Thailand’s nearly 70 million people have received 3 doses of the vaccine, while 69% have received 2 basic doses of the vaccine.

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