Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh (right) and Deputy PM Vu Duc Dam discuss vaccine plans on May 18. Photo: Nhat Bac/VGP
The resolution states that the Government has assigned the Ministry of Health to urgently organize the purchase of vaccines as quickly as possible so that vaccinations can be widely implemented in the country.
Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh has repeatedly emphasized that confronting new developments of the pandemic, Covid-19 prevention and control in Vietnam needs to change: combining defense and attack harmoniously and effectively implementing the "5K message + vaccine" strategy [5K message: Khau trang (facemask)- (Khu khuan) disinfection- (Khoang cach) distance- (Khong tu tap) no gathering – (Khai bao y te) health declaration].
The Prime Minister asked to implement the vaccine strategy by accelerating the purchase and import of vaccine in accordance with the Prime Minister's direction; receive technology transfer, speed up domestic vaccine research and production; organize vaccinations effectively, and proactively prevent incidents and clearly explain when incidents occur.
In the context of "fighting the epidemic like fighting the enemy" and a global shortage of Covid-19 vaccines, and to have vaccines under the guidance of the Politburo and the Government, the Prime Minister has asked the Ministry of Health and other ministries and agencies to uphold the sense of responsibility for the people's health and the interests of the nation, to unify the implementation of solutions to have vaccines as soon as possible.
This is an urgent situation so the purchase of vaccines must be handled in accordance with the law on special, urgent cases, and this must be done immediately.
According to the latest news from the Ministry of Health, Vietnam has signed an agreement to purchase 31 million doses of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine. These doses will be delivered in the third and fourth quarters in 2021, raising the total volume of imported COVID-19 vaccines in the year to 110 million doses.
Vietnam has received a total of 2,611,000 AstraZeneca vaccine doses, including 2,493,600 ones shipped by the COVAX Facility. More than 1,011,390 frontline workers have been vaccinated between March 8 and May 18, according to the Ministry of Health. The Government plans to buy 150 million vaccine doses to cover 70% of the country’s population.
Vietnam may set up US$1.1 billion COVID-19 vaccine fund
The Ministry of Finance (MoF) has initiated plans to set up a national COVID-19 vaccine fund in an effort to ensure the necessary financial resources are available for the future purchase of vaccines for domestic use.
Approximately one million people have been given the AstraZeneca vaccine shot in Vietnam since the national COVID-19 vaccination campaign was lanched in March.
The MoF says that the fund aims effectively mobilise, co-ordinate, and utilise legal financial sources, including those from both national and international individuals and organisations, for COVID-19 vaccine imports.
The establishment of the fund is anticipated to meet the requirements of vaccine imports for their emergency use domestically amid the complex nature of COVID-19 developments locally and globally, according to the MoF in its proposal put forward to the Prime Minister for consideration.
In line with the plan, the MoF says Vietnam will import 150 million doses in order to vaccinate 75 million people against the SARS-CoV-2 virus.
It will therefore require approximately VND25.2 trillion for the fund, including VND21 trillion to be allocated for vaccine imports, and the remainder for vaccine transportation, preservation, distribution, and vaccinations.
According to the Ministry of Health, Vietnam is poised to receive 110 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines from both AstraZeneca and Pfizer this year.
It is negotiating with other vaccine manufacturers, including Moderna of the United States, Sputnik V of Russia, and Sinopharm of China, as it strives to diversify sources of supply for domestic use.
The fourth wave of the COVID-19 epidemic has attacked the country following the emergence of new SARS-CoV-2 cases in late April. Roughly 1,700 new cases have been confirmed across 28 cities and provinces nationwide. VOV
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