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Thailand to roll-out mix-and-match Covid-19 vaccination plan

BANGKOK (Sept 11): Thailand will roll-out its mix-and-match COVID-19 vaccination plan as early as October as the kingdom fights its worst COVID-19 outbreak. 

Director of News Division from the Department of Information of Foreign Affairs Ministry Pensom Lertsithichai said the Center for COVID-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) meeting chaired by Prime Minister Prayuth Chan o-cha agreed with the mix-and-match vaccination. 

With the consultation and advice from Public Health Ministry, she said Thailand will be moving forward with mix-and-match vaccination plan which include Sinovac and AstraZeneca, Sionvac and Pfizer-BioNTech and AstraZeneca and Pfizer-BioNTech.

“The reason we have change to this (mix-and-match) vaccination as by end of September, we will be receiving a large number of mRNA vaccine, Pfizer-BioNTech which we procured and we bring into use,” she said at a press conference here yesterday. 

Meanwhile, Pensom said Thailand to offer booster shots to those who have completed two doses of Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine, as early as end of this month.

Those who have received two shots of Sinovac since March to May would receive a booster.

“They will receive a booster vaccination of AstraZeneca or Pfizer-BioNTech… this will start very soon, maybe by end of September or early October,” she said.

Starting mid-July, Thailand started giving booster shots of imported mRNA vaccine to its frontline workers - who were given imported Sinovac before.

Thailand extended its COVID-19 restrictions including the seven-hour night curfew until end of this month in Bangkok and 28 provinces, in bid to ensure COVID-19 cases continued its downward trend.

“To ensure the downward trend continues and there will be a smooth transition to the reopening of the country in October, the CCSA has deemed it is best to extend the existing measures we have in place now until Sept 30,” she said.

The restrictions including the night curfew from 9pm to 4am will remain at Bangkok and 28 maximum and strict controlled areas or ‘dark red zone’.

Besides that, public gatherings involving a maximum of 25 people are permitted in the dark red zones.

Shopping malls, public parks, salons and barber shops (only for hair cut), massage parlours (only for foot massage) will remain open.

Besides that, restaurant dinning with limited capacity to allow for social distancing where 75 per cent seating capacity for premises with no air-conditioning and 50 per cent seating capacity for restaurants with air-conditioning.

Over the last 24 hours, Thailand recorded 14,403 new COVID-19 cases and 189 deaths, bringing the total infections in the kingdom to 1,352,953 and 13,920 fatalities. 

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