Worried parents told kids' jabs are safe
The Department of Health is urging parents to take their children for Covid-19 shots ahead of the new school term this month.
The advice comes after figures showing that almost 29% of kids aged between five and 11 have yet to receive a single dose.
The findings show that about 54.1% of children aged five and 11 have received their first jab and their parents plan to have them complete a full dose, while 28.7% remain entirely unvaccinated.
The Ministry of Public Health kicked off vaccinations among this age group in February with each child expected to receive two mRNA-based Pfizer jabs three to 12 weeks apart.
According to the ministry, Thailand has 5.8 million eligible children, including 900,000 who are considered as vulnerable to infections.
Dr Suwannachai said many parents are hesitant to get their kids vaccinated, with 77.2% of those polled worried about their kids experiencing adverse reactions and 55.3% saying they had safety concerns.
He said the vaccine has been found to improve immunity against the disease and prevent severe symptoms and death in this age group and that it is the best precaution for children going back to school.
"Parents should consider having their children vaccinated and seek doctors' advice if their kids have underlying health concerns," he said.
According to Dr Suwannachai, common symptoms after getting a Pfizer vaccine are swelling at the injection site, headache, tiredness and fever but these effects can be treated with medication and with enough rest they should go away after a week.
- director-general: the head of a large organisation, especially a public organisation - อธิบดี
- eligible: allowed by rules or laws to do something or to receive something - มีสิทธิชอบธรรมตามกฎหมาย เอื้อด้วยกฎหมาย
- express: to tell someone about a feeling, opinion, or aim by speaking or writing about it - แสดงออก (ทางความคิดหรือความรู้สึก) โดยใช้คำพูดหรือการเขียน, พูดออกมา
- jab: a vaccination - การฉีดวัคซีน
- poll: to ask a lot of people about what they feel about something - สำรวจความคิดเห็น
- precaution: an action taken to protect people or things against possible harm or trouble - การป้องกันไว้ก่อน
- side effects (noun): unpleasant effects of a drug that happen in addition to the main effect - ผลข้างเคียง
- swelling (noun): the condition of being larger or rounder than normal (= of being swollen); a place on your body that has become larger or rounder than normal as the result of an illness or injury - การบวม, การพอง
- underlying (adj): important in a situation but not always easily noticed or stated clearly; existing under the surface of something else - ที่สำคัญและซ่อนอยู่, ที่อยู่ในตำแหน่งต่ำกว่า
- urge: to advise someone very strongly about what action or attitude they should take - ผลักดัน, กระตุ้น