South Korea is NOT ruling out the possibility of curbing exports of AstraZeneca's Covid-19 shots produced in the country.
That's according to the nation's health authorities on Tuesday when asked about that possibility amid growing concerns about delayed shipments of vaccines as the U.S., Europe and India take steps to strengthen control over vaccine exports to deal with global vaccine shortages.
South Korea's mass immunization program has so far been mainly reliant on locally produced AstraZeneca shots, although it did secure a smaller volume of Pfizer shots that are now being used for the older population.
With more than 35-thousand people having received their vaccine on Tuesday, more than one million first doses have been administered in the country.
But, that's still less than two percent of the entire population.
To speed up the rollout, the nation's health authorities are expected to make an announcement on Wednesday regarding the final approval of Johnson and Johnson Janssen's single-dose Covid-19 vaccine in South Korea.
Meanwhile, the country added 478 new COVID-19 cases on Tuesday the second day in a row that the number has been in the four hundreds.
All but 18 were locally transmitted…. bringing its virus caseload to over 106-thousand.
The daily tally that had been hovering over 500 since last Wednesday before falling to the 400s over the weekend is keeping authorities on their toes as sporadic cluster infections continue nationwide with a looming resurgence.
Hundreds have been found to be linked to nationwide branches of a church, and kindergartens, restaurants, singing rooms and multi-use public facilities have been traced back for cluster infections, as well.
Authorities warned of a fourth wave, although not here just yet, and urged everyone with any suspected symptoms of Covid-19 to get tested.
“We’ve already said this many times, but COVID-19 symptoms are not unusual.
If you have a sore throat, respiratory symptoms, fever, or loss of smell or taste, please visit nearest COVID-19 testing centers for an immediate test.”
The hope is having more than 10 million people vaccinated by the end of June would help contain the spread more effectively.
Choi Won-jong, Arirang News