Germany donates vax gear to help at-risk groups
The Ministry of Public Health has received four ultra-cold temperature freezers to store Covid-19 vaccines and 51,000 sets of low dead-space syringes and needles from the German development agency GIZ.
The equipment will be used to boost vaccination rollouts for vulnerable groups, including at-risk people living in border areas, said Dr Opas Karnkawinpong, director-general of the Public Health Ministry's Department of Disease Control.
He said the freezers will be needed to store mRNA vaccines at ultra-low temperatures of up to minus 70º Celsius.
The equipment also will be used in the Covid-19 vaccination programme, he said, adding the government is planning to buy at least 120 million vaccine doses to be used as booster shots this year.
Hans-Ulrich Suedbeck, deputy German ambassador, said the donation aims to support vulnerable groups, including those living along border areas.
The move is part of a health cooperation programme with Asean, he said.
"The donation marks another important step in our long-standing partnership with Thailand as we celebrate 160 years of Thai-German relations in 2022," he said.
"Last year, Germany supported Thailand -- the first EU member state to do so -- with the donation of vaccines as well as medicines for Covid-19 patients," he added.
The GIZ is owned by the German government and operates in more than 120 countries. The agency provides services in the field of international cooperation for sustainable development.