FTI calls for alternative jab locations
The Federation of Thai Industries (FTI) suggests the government use petrol stations of the majority state-owned Bangchak Corporation Plc (BCP) and factories nationwide as vaccination locations to speed up the rollout.
BCP has more than 1,200 petrol stations across the country and wants to support the state vaccination plan, said FTI chairman Supant Mongkolsuthree after a recent talk with business people on cooperation to deal with the impact of the pandemic.
FTI also offered the use of factories of its member companies in many provinces to help with the rollout of the vaccines.
"The FTI committee agreed to use BCP petrol stations and factories," said Mr Supant, referring to the committee's meeting on April 19.
Efforts to get Covid-19 under control are not only being hindered by limited supplies of imported vaccines, but the government is also making slow progress in providing vaccines to the Thai people.
"The government must speed up providing vaccines to people to prevent new Covid-19 outbreaks," he said.
The third wave of the pandemic is causing grave concern as daily infection rates are alarmingly high, threatening to deal a further blow to the reeling economy.
The FTI also wants the government to allow the private sector to import vaccines approved by the Thai Food and Drug Administration to help distribute vaccines to workers.
"We hope to see private companies obtain import licences as soon as possible. This will help the government save its budget," said Mr Supant.
Around 50,000 factories affiliated with the FTI said they are willing to buy 100,000 doses of vaccines independently and their numbers are increasing, said the federation.
The FTI also called on the government to educate and train qualified people, including medical students and pharmacists, to administer vaccines, so they can assist hospital personnel.
"Thailand needs more people who can administer vaccines because the number of medical staff is inadequate," he said.