Nearly two weeks since South Korea began its COVID-19 vaccination campaign, some 540-thousand people have received their first dose.

“South Korea’s vaccination campaign had seen a slower start compared to those countries that are hit harder by COVID-19, but with the active participation of the public, the vaccinations are proceeding with speed.”

And the inoculations are set to further pick up pace, possibly reaching 1 million by the end of this month.
That comes after the government approved the use of AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine for those aged 65 and older, who had been previously excluded due to a lack of data on that age group.
Over 370-thousand people in that age group at nursing hospitals and care homes will start to receive their first shots this month.
They will be added to some 780-thousand registered recipients in the current round of vaccinations.
To inoculate the 370-thousand newly added people, South Korea will be using the AstraZeneca doses that it will receive from the global vaccine supply scheme COVAX facility later this month which will be enough to inoculate some 345-thousand people.
Meanwhile, the government is aiming to reach 12 million vaccinations by the first half of the year, by expanding the list of priority groups.

“First, the government will start inoculating nurses and teachers at special schools for disabled children.
We will make sure other teachers will also subsequently get their shots depending on the vaccine supply situation.”

To speed up the vaccinations, regulators are also considering using the batch it secured for recipients’ second dose to give more individuals their first dose.
AstraZeneca a two-dose-regimen requires two shots with an interval of 10 weeks.
Lee Kyung-eun, Arirang News.

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