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COVID-19 vaccination to begin in Vietnam on March 8

Vaccination using the recently imported AstraZeneca vaccine is expected to start on March 8, Minister of Health Nguyen Thanh Long informed a meeting of the National Steering Committee for COVID-19 Prevention and Control on March 5.

Earlier, more than 117,600 doses of the vaccine, manufactured in the Republic of Korea (RoK), arrived in Vietnam on February 24. After holding working sessions with the producer, Vietnam has obtained an accreditation certificate for the batch from the RoK.

Long said the doses, verified by the ministry, meet the conditions for vaccination in Vietnam.

As scheduled, on March 6, the Health Minister will chair a conference to launch the vaccination plan and provide related training for medical staff nationwide in the use and storage of the vaccine, as well as the handling of post-injection complications.

According to the official, priority in vaccination will be given to people at the front line of the fight against COVID-19, including health, army, police, customs and immigration personnel; those working in sectors offering essential services like aviation, transport, tourism and education; people with chronic illnesses or above 65 years old; those living in pandemic-hit areas; the poor and beneficiaries of social welfare policy.

People getting the shots will be monitored via digital health records and receive e-certificates for their completion of inoculation.

Vietnam plans to import about 150 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines this year./