Moderna shots to be allotted

Moderna shots to be allotted

With initial supply far short of demand, private hospitals work out system for dividing up doses

A healthcare worker holds a vial of Moderna Covid vaccine at a vaccination site in New York City. (Reuters photo)
A healthcare worker holds a vial of Moderna Covid vaccine at a vaccination site in New York City. (Reuters photo)

Not all people who have booked, and paid for, the Moderna Covid-19 vaccine from private hospitals will get all their shots since an allotment system will apply, according to the chairman of the Private Hospitals Association.

Chalerm Harnphanich told Thai media late this week about the need for the allotment, which looks very much like a share subscription.

He said the association had placed an order for 5 million doses through the Government Pharmaceutical Organization, which would sign a supply agreement with Zuellig Pharma Thailand, the local representative, on their behalf.

As Covid-19 vaccines are new and for emergency use only, manufacturers want governments to accept “no-fault compensation” and don’t deal directly with private entities.

But before the allotment, 1.1 million of the 5 million shots would go to the Thai Red Cross Society, as well as Siriraj and Ramathibodi hospitals, leaving the private hospitals with 3.9 million doses, Dr Chalerm said.

The Thai Red Cross Society said its 1 million shots would be sold to provincial administration organisations nationwide at 1,300 baht each on condition they administer them on people for free. Siriraj and Ramathibodhi hospitals said they needed the shots for medical workers.

Demand surveys showed 277 of 330 member hospitals of the association had booked 9.2 million doses in total, he said.

To distribute the remaining supply evenly, all 277 hospitals would first get 10,000 shots each. At this stage, Dr Chalerm said 194 hospitals would get 100% of their bookings since they needed less than 10,000 each.

The remaining 2.4 million doses will then be allotted proportionally to the hospitals according to their demand, which at this stage totalled 7.7 million doses. It is then up to each hospital to decide who would get them and how many, he said.

Asked whether the association would order more shots, Dr Chalerm said his group had already planned to order 5-10 million doses of the second generation of the vaccine, expected to be out in the second quarter of next year. 

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