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Taiwan receives another batch of 410,000 Moderna vaccine doses

ROC Central News Agency

06/30/2021 05:41 PM

Taipei, June 30 (CNA) Taiwan on Wednesday took delivery of a third shipment of Moderna COVID-19 vaccine it bought from the U.S. drugmaker, containing 410,000 doses.

The shipment arrived at Taoyuan International Airport around 4:45 p.m. on an EVA Air cargo flight that left Amsterdam late Tuesday, local time.

On arrival, the vaccine was transported to a designated cold storage logistics center for follow-up inspection and sealing operations, according to the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC).

The shipment is part of a 5.05 million dose purchasing contract Taiwan signed with Moderna on Feb. 8.

The first batch of 150,000 doses arrived in Taiwan on May 28, and a second shipment of 240,000 doses arrived on June 18, according to the CECC.

In addition to the Moderna vaccine Taiwan bought, the U.S. government also donated 2.5 million doses of Moderna vaccine to Taiwan, which arrived in the country on June 20.

 


According to the CECC, the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine is packaged in multiple-dose form, with each vial containing 10 doses.

The vaccine can be stored at a temperature of minus 20 degrees Celsius for six months and at 2-8 degrees for about 30 days.

Two doses are needed for the vaccine to be effective, as clinical trials have shown a 94 percent efficacy rate 14 days after the second dose, according to the CECC.

Taiwan has signed contracts to purchase nearly 20 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines from abroad, including 5.05 million of Moderna, 10 million of AstraZeneca, and 4.76 million of unspecified brands through the COVAX program.

It has also signed contracts to buy 10 million doses of vaccines from two Taiwanese companies.

However, even with the latest donation from the U.S. and a recent donation of 1.24 million doses of AstraZeneca vacccine from Japan, Taiwan has currently received only 5 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines.

According to experts, Taiwan will need to vaccinate at least 60 percent of its population to achieve herd immunity and safely reopen to the outside world, which means acquiring around 30 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines.

At present, only 8 percent of Taiwan's 23 million population has received at least one COVID-19 vaccine shot.

 


Meanwhile, Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) said more government-bought vaccines will begin to arrive in the country soon and with more vaccines available, the government will expand the scope of COVID-19 vaccination starting in July.

Currently, the vaccine is mostly being administered to frontline medical personnel, workers involved in government disease control efforts and people in high-risk jobs.

(By Joseph Yeh)

Enditem/AW



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