“Vaccines against COVID-19 donated by Poland will arrive in Taipei,” Taiwanese Health and Social Welfare Minister Chen Shih-Chung said at a press conference on Saturday. Poland will be the sixth country to make such a gesture.
The authorities in the country have not yet confirmed the quantity and producer of the vaccines. However, local media report that 400,000 doses of AstraZeneca will fly from Vienna to Taipei on Sunday morning.
Nearly 6 million vaccines have already been donated by Japan, the US, Lithuania and the Czech Republic. Slovakia has also confirmed the will to send vaccine doses.
Vaccines from Poland are the third largest donation Taiwan has received from abroad. Japan gave Taiwan over 3 million doses of the vaccine, the USA 2.5 million, the Czech Republic 30,000 doses, and Lithuania 20,000 doses. Additional batches of the vaccine are planned to come from Japan and Slovakia.
Vaccine shortages are one of the most pressing problems of Taiwan’s 24 million inhabitants. Despite the purchase of 20 million doses, the vaccine did not reach Taiwan for a long time. Only thanks to the donated vaccines was it possible to speed up the inoculation programme.
Until now more than 10 million people have been vaccinated with the first dose and just one million with the second dose. In August, inoculations with the local Medigen vaccine began. So far, 800,000 doses of Medigen have been delivered to hospitals, with 600,000 people already being vaccinated.
Last week, after the pandemic situation was brought under control, Taiwan moved to a lower, second level of restrictions. No local cases of COVID-19 infections were recorded on Saturday. Since the outbreak of the pandemic, 16,013 infections have been confirmed with 837 people dead.
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