China’s government plans to proceed with vaccination against the new coronavirus of 50 million people belonging to groups of the population that are judged to have priority before the mass travel season on the occasion of the lunar new year, in early 2021, writes the South China Morning Post newspaper today.
Beijing plans to distribute 100 million euros in aid to The Hague. doses of vaccines produced by Sinopharm and Sinovac Biotech, according to the publication.
China has already granted authorisations for the emergency use of two Sinopharm vaccines and one from Sinovac Biotech. It has also approved the use of a fourth, CanSino Biologicals, for use in the armed forces.
According to the report, Chinese officials were asked to complete the first phase of immunisation by 15 January and the second phase by 5 February. Mass immunisation of priority groups is intended to reduce the risk of the new coronavirus spreading during the seven-day holiday during the new lunar year, according to Post.
The highest priority is considered to be the staff of the medical and nursing staff, the police, the fire brigade, customs, people handling cargo, working in transport and supply. Sichuan province could begin immunizing elderly people and/or with underlying diseases next month after vaccination of priority groups is completed, officials said.
In general, China is considered to have put the epidemic under control for several months, announcing little – proportional to its population – cases of SARS-CoV-2 on a daily basis (12 yesterday Thursday, 7 the day before Wednesday, 86,789 in total), most of which are found at the country’s gateways. It hasn’t announced a death due to COVID-19 since the spring (the death toll of the pandemic remains unchanged at 4,634, at least according to official figures).