HK Could Dispose Millions Of Unused Vaccine Doses

Marco Green
May 26, 2021

When he received the jab, he had said it was "wonderful".

Speaking on RTHK's Hong Kong Today programme, he urged people not to take a wait-and-see approach in case their favoured vaccines weren't available at a later stage.

"They can not be used after the expiry date and the community vaccination centres for BioNTech will, according to present plans, cease operating after September".

"The whole world is scrambling for vaccines and its is not just right that we can buy a vaccine overnight and we just have it".

"What we have is probably all we have for the rest of the year", he said.

The former British colony is one of the few areas in the world that achieved sufficient doses to vaccinate the entire population of 7.5 million, but the vaccination campaign is far from the expected success, largely due to mistrust towards the government's position, considered by many to be an arm Chinese crackdown after the 2019 demonstrations.

The Warwickshire native was an in-patient at the hospital's frailty ward at the time he received his vaccine dose, per the BBC.

The companies also announced that they are planning a study to evaluate a variant-specific vaccine, using a new construct of their jab based on the B.1.351 variant first identified in South Africa.

Hesitation is also common among health care workers in the city.

Currently, there are millions of unused Pfizer-BioNTech shots that are stored at ultra-low temperatures and require a shelf life of 6 months. A total of 3,263,000 doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines have been shipped to Hong Kong so far but only 1,231,600 have been administered.

In recent weeks, some Hong Kong politicians have suggested that the city may consider sending unused vaccines overseas if intake does not improve.

Officials have also struggled to come up with incentives to encourage vaccination in a city where long quarantine measures and economically painful social distancing rules have kept infections low.

Instead, authorities have been primarily responsible for businesses to force employees to vaccinate.

However on Tuesday city leader Carrie Lam rejected that suggestion.

He said, "The provision of money or anything tangible to vaccinate people should not be by the government", considering that "it could have an opposite effect than what is intended". No part may be reproduced without written permission, except for fair transactions for personal investigation or research purposes.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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