Global roll-out of COVID-19 vax doses largest-ever, but access an issue: WHO
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New Delhi: Thailand on Thursday received 200,000 doses of India-made Covovax vaccines as part of a flagship initiative of the Quad grouping to help countries combat the coronavirus pandemic.

The vaccine doses were handed over to Thai Deputy Prime Minister Anutin Charnvirakul in Bangkok by India’s Ambassador to Thailand Suchitra Durai, Australian envoy Allan McKinnon, Japan’s Nashida Kazuya and US Charge d’Affaires James Wayman, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said.

“The consignment comprising 200,000 doses of Made in India, Covovax vaccines was presented to Anutin Charnvirakul, Deputy Prime Minister and the Minister of Public Health of Thailand on April 21 in Bangkok,” it said.

This is the second consignment of vaccines delivered by India under the Quad vaccine partnership, after the inaugural supply to Cambodia on April 12.

The Quad vaccine partnership was announced by leaders of the four-nation grouping at their first summit on March 12 last year.

The MEA said the vaccine doses were supplied to fulfil the commitment made by Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the Quad leaders’ Summit in Washington in September last to donate 500,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccines to countries in the Indo-Pacific region.

“The Quad countries have so far provided Thailand four-and-a-half million COVID-19 vaccine doses. Quad countries have also provided last-mile delivery assistance and monetary support to ensure that vaccines are translated into vaccinations,” the MEA said in a statement.

It said Australia is supporting Thailand in delivering vaccines safely and effectively to its population, including through strengthening data systems and developing communication strategies with a focus on migrant populations.

The MEA said India extended support to Thailand in augmenting its capabilities to fight the pandemic by providing oxygen concentrators and essential medicines.

“Japan has provided oxygen concentrators for the treatment of the disease and high-quality equipment for vaccine storage and transport through ‘Last One Mile Support’,” it said.

“The US has provided assistance with surveillance and contact tracing, case investigation, training health care workers and data management,” it added.

The MEA said Thailand has conveyed its appreciation for the vaccines received from the Quad and for its collective assistance to that country.

“Quad countries have assured Thailand about their desire to extend all possible support to combat the pandemic,” it said. PTI MPB

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