Thailand welcomes U.S. donation of 1 million vaccine doses

Thailand welcomed the arrival last week of one million doses of the Moderna vaccine donated by the U.S. government, as the Kingdom presses ahead with its national program to inoculate the entire population and guest workers against COVID-19.

The Moderna vaccine donation was the second batch from the U.S. to Thailand. In July, the administration of U.S. President Joseph Biden sent 1.5 million doses of the Pfizer vaccine to the Kingdom. On both occasions, Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha and Minister of Public Health Anutin Charnvirakul expressed appreciation for American generosity.

Thailand has been relying mainly on the Astra Zeneca vaccine in its anti-COVID-19 efforts. The Astra Zeneca formulation is produced locally under contract from the pharmaceutical firm.

“While the first tranche of vaccines helped Thailand contain the COVID-19 outbreak, this second tranche will help Thailand reach its goal of vaccinating 70 percent of the population by January 2022, paving the way for the country’s economic recovery,” said Michael Heath, Charge d’Affaires of the U.S. Embassy in Bangkok.

Currently, Thailand’s nationwide vaccine drive is steadily working its way beyond the capital of Bangkok where most people are already fully vaccinated.

In Thailand, COVID-19 is designated as an outbreak, according to World Health Organization classifications, and has never reached the epidemic level.