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Sa Kaeo J&J Vaccine User May Not Get Covid-19, But May Spend 5 Years in Jail

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A Sa Kaeo man may not get Covid-19 now, but he could spend five years in jail for smuggling the Johnson & Johnson vaccine into Thailand.

The unidentified patient injected with J&J’s single-dose vaccine at a clinic in Aranyaprathet District of the northeastern province faces a jail term of up to five years and a fine of up to 10,000 baht for violating Section 12 of the Drug Act, said Food & Drug Adminisration Deputy Secretary-General Dr. Surachoke Tangwiwat.

Sa Kaeo’s health department suspets the patient carried the vaccine into the country from Cambodia and had it administered by a doctor at the clinic.

Surachoke said the unidentified doctor violated a law of the Department of Health Service Support and breached ethical standards because the vaccine was smuggled.

Although the FDA has registered the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, it must be imported by a licensed importer to guarantee the quality and must be stored at a proper temperature, Surachoke said.

Janssen-Cilag Co. applied for the registration of the vaccine and had not imported it, he said.

The J&J vaccine is among the main Covid-19 vaccines that the government is acquiring for general public but it did not allow any unauthorized administration of the vaccine, he said.