Factory workers to get Sinopharm

Factory workers to get Sinopharm

Target of 1,000 per day to start on July 9

Map Ta Phut Industrial Estate office in Rayong is scheduled to become a vaccination venue for factory workers.
Map Ta Phut Industrial Estate office in Rayong is scheduled to become a vaccination venue for factory workers.

The state-private partnership expects to start distributing Chinese-made Sinopharm vaccines to factory workers in five industrial estates and a deep-sea port in Map Ta Phut on July 9, with a target of 1,000 vaccines administered per day.

The inoculation will be carried out for workers at WHA Eastern Industrial Estate (Map Ta Phut), Map Ta Phut Industrial Estate, Padaeng Industrial Estate, RIL Industrial Estate, Asia Industrial Estate and Map Ta Phut deep-sea port in Rayong.

Industry Minister Suriya Jungrungreangkit said vaccine distribution in industrial complexes is crucial because workers in the manufacturing sector are important to help drive supply chains and the economy.

"It's great that factory workers can receive vaccines faster. This is good for Thai industry," he said.

The government, which started mass vaccinations on Monday, aims to distribute 500,000 doses a day in order to achieve herd community.

The Industrial Estate Authority of Thailand (IEAT) is working with the Federation of Thai Industries (FTI) to speed up the administration of Covid-19 jabs to workers in industrial estates.

FTI vice-chairman Kriengkrai Thiennukul said earlier that the federation wanted a total of 1 million doses, however, it signed a memorandum of understanding with Chulabhorn Royal Academy to receive 300,000 doses.

The academy announced that it had procured Sinopharm as an alternative vaccine in addition to two main vaccines -- UK-developed AstraZeneca and China's Sinovac -- in the government's national vaccination scheme.

Each Sinopharm dose is estimated to cost 1,000 baht with each employee requiring two doses.

The companies want to vaccinate their employees as a worker benefit, Mr Kriengkrai said.

FTI is focusing on distributing Sinopharm vaccines following concerns about a vaccine shortage under the state vaccination scheme. The vaccines are expected to be imported into Thailand between June 15 and June 20.

"IEAT will use the first floor of its Map Ta Phut Industrial Estate office as a vaccination venue," said IEAT governor Veeris Ammarapala.

The office is a good location as it is near Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn Memorial Hospital.

The vaccinations will run from 8am to 6pm, said Mr Veeris.

So far 25,000 workers have registered to receive the vaccine through IEAT.

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