The government is placing the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration back at the centre of its handling of the pandemic, after the CCSA delegated some authority to government ministries. Government spokesman Anucha Burapachaisri says the Covid-19 task force will resume its central role as the government ramps up the national vaccine rollout. Officials aim to vaccinate around 30 million people over the coming 3 months, and 50 million by the end of the year.
PM Prayut Chan-o-cha has also held talks with advisers at Government House aimed at increasing the distribution of Covid-19 vaccines, now considered a top priority in the war on the virus. In a post on his Facebook page, the PM says the government will do all it can to obtain more doses for the national rollout. He says the target is to purchase 10 – 15 million doses a month from various manufacturers. To date, only 3 vaccines have been approved for use in Thailand: Sinovac, AstraZeneca, and the single-dose Johnson & Johnson jab. The government recently confirmed that US manufacturer Pfizer has agreed to provide 5 – 10 million doses of its vaccine. Russian leader Vladimir Putin has also pledged to send doses of the Sputnik V vaccine.
The PM says officials will also improve how state and private bodies work together in order to have a wider distribution of vaccines. Vaccination centres will be opened across the country, using locations such as sports centres, meeting halls, and hotels, in order to ease overcrowding in hospitals, whose priority remains Covid-19 patients.
Danucha Pichayanan from the National Economic and Social Development Council has confirmed the PM’s plan to ramp up vaccine procurement.
“The prime minister instructed all agencies involved to step up their efforts to procure more than 100 million vaccine doses by the end of this year. The vaccination drive will operate under a single command to ensure effective distribution.”
Meanwhile, the PM will meet with representatives from the private sector tomorrow to discuss how businesses and industries can purchase vaccines for their own workers.
SOURCE: Bangkok Post
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