Singapore to begin Pfizer/BioNTech program this week

Bangkok, Dec 27 (efe-epa).- The government of Singapore on Sunday said it would begin to roll out the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine on 30 December and would first prioritize healthcare workers.

Staff members at the National Centre for Infectious Diseases are set to be the first to receive the first of two doses of the vaccine on Wednesday before the campaign moves on to other medical institutions.

The Singaporean health ministry added in a statement that, from February, the vaccine would be administered to the over 70s.

“Protecting such persons minimizes Covid-19 related mortality and morbidity, and ensures that our healthcare system will continue to have the capacity to care for the overall health of all Singaporeans,” the statement ran.

The vaccine program would then move on to other Singaporeans and residents who are “medically eligible” for the jab.

The vaccine will be free and voluntary, although officials have recommended that everyone receives it.

The government hopes to immunize the whole population by the end of 2021.

The health ministry said that the vaccine would allow borders to reopen once again.

“Vaccination is not a silver bullet that can end the pandemic immediately, but it is a key enabler to getting us back to a safer state of affairs. It will complement other existing key enablers — safe management measures, testing and contact tracing — which will continue to be necessary in helping us to mitigate any spread and keep community transmission low,” the statement said.

The first batch of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine arrived in Singapore on 21 December but authorities have not stated how many doses were available.

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