TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwan began administering its first batch of Moderna COVID-19 vaccine doses today (June 9).
On Tuesday (June 8), Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) uploaded an announcement to his Facebook page stating that since the arrival of 150,000 Moderna doses on May 28, the Food and Drug Administration has completed an inspection, and Zuellig Pharma has placed them in freezers at a temperature of minus 20 degrees Celsius. He said distribution of the doses to designated hospitals would begin that day in all counties and major cities across the country.
According to Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) spokesperson Chuang Jen-hsiang (莊人祥), the first batch of doses will be administered to medical personnel who are categorized as risk Level 1 and 2. These healthcare professionals are mainly front-line staff at specialized hospitals treating coronavirus patients.
Currently, the CECC plans to deliver the vaccines to 137 hospitals, with the doses being distributed in proportion to the outbreak situation in a given county or city.
Su observed that the coats worn by the personnel handling the vaccines are much thicker due to the extremely low temperatures in which the vaccines must be stored. He pointed out that every phase of the epidemic control effort is arduous and called on citizens to reduce activities and unnecessary outings during the upcoming Dragon Boat Festival holiday to help bring the outbreak under control and lessen the burden on medical personnel.