China administers a billion Covid-19 vaccine doses

China administers a billion vaccine doses
Residents in Foshan in southern China wait to receive their second vaccine doses. Source: Getty Images
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Daily US Times: China has administered more than a billion doses of Covid-19 vaccines, which is more than a third of all vaccine doses given globally, officials say.

China’s vaccination drive began slowly after authorities successfully suppressed virus cases.

But concern over an outbreak of the Delta variant and incentives such as free eggs have seen jabs accelerate.

Chinese government aim to have fully vaccinated 40% of the country’s 1.4 billion population by July.

People in China are being offered domestically made Chinese vaccines, including the Sinovac and Sinopharm vaccines. Both of the vaccines require two doses.

After mass testing and lockdowns prevented the virus from circulating, many Chinese felt little need to get vaccinated. Previous vaccine scandals had also left some people wary in the country.

However the pace of vaccinations against Covid-19 has rapidly increased and China’s National Health Commission said it had taken just five days to administer the latest 100 million doses.

An outbreak of the Delta variant in the country’s southern province of Guangdong has also convinced some Chinese to be vaccinated.

Symptoms from the new variant appeared to be different, doctors in the southern city of Guangzhou told the New York Times, and more dangerous than those linked to the initial form of the virus that began spreading in the city of Wuhan at the end of 2019.

New York Times quoted a resident of Shenzhen, a city near Guangzhou, who said she hadn’t wanted to get Covid-19 because of possible side effects but had now changed her mind.

The 27-year-old said: “I want to get vaccinated, but it’s really hard to make an appointment now,” adding that incentives such as free eggs or free rides to vaccination centres were no longer being offered.

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