Another COVID-19 vaccine is now officially available in South Korea. This time, it's the one from Moderna.
Regulators on Wednesday granted Moderna's vaccine a "National Lot Release", after it went through the final quality check before market distribution.
The initial batch of some 55-thousand doses will be used to inoculate medical workers under the age of 30, who were too young to receive the AstraZeneca jabs in the first quarter.
Once the inoculations start this week, Moderna's vaccine will become the fourth COVID-19 vaccine used in South Korea, following the AstraZeneca, Pfizer, and Janssen vaccines.
The two-dose vaccine shows an impressive efficacy rate of 94 percent.
And, according to the U.S. CDC, it also provides 88 percent protection against the highly concerning Delta variant, which is more transmissible and can cause severe disease.
The rollout of Moderna's vaccine will help South Korea maintain its vaccination rate,that's rapidly picking up pace, with one in every four people now vaccinated with at least one dose.
"So far more than 13 million people have received at least one shot,amounting to 25.7 percent. That realizes the country's 13-million goal two weeks earlier than initially planned."
And heading into the third quarter, Novavax's vaccines will start being rolled out, finally making all five contracted vaccines available in the country.
Authorities will announce a detailed inoculation plan for each type of vaccine,on Thursday.
This next round of vaccinations will cover those under 60,which KDCA commissioner Jeong Eun-kyeong said will start with the over-50s.
She added it is likely to be expanded to those aged 18 to 49 in August.
Lee Kyung-eun, Arirang News.