The Cabinet has set aside the 6 billion baht to reserve and procure prospective Covid-19 vaccines, but not either of the two for which newly released clinical-trial data showed they were more than 94 percent effective.
Thailand has reserved 26 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines from AstraZeneca to ensure the country will be one of the first countries to have access to the vaccine when it is available after the safety approval. It will also be allowed to use the technology for vaccine production in the country.
AstraZeneca has paused its Phase 3 trial for a month due to safety issues, but plans to resume them once the investigation into the issues is complete.
American pharmaceutical companies Moderna Inc and Pfizer Inc. are near the end of the their third-stage trials and released the promising test results. Thailand has not expressed public interest in acquiring those vaccines, which could be difficult to deploy in the country’s hot climate.
If Thailand didn’t pre-order vaccines, it will have to buy them at higher prices when they are complete.
Out of all budget approved, 2.3 billion baht will be used for vaccine development and 3.5 billion baht will be spent on vaccine procurement and management.
The government initially hopes to make Covid-19 vaccines available for 13 million people or about 20 per cent of its population.