By Riyaz ul Khaliq
ANKARA (AA) – Taiwan on Monday started its COVID-19 vaccination campaign with the first shot of Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine being administered to Premier Su Tseng-chang.
"With the advice of the expert team and the assistance of National Taiwan University Hospital, I have received the first dose of COVID-19 vaccine," he said on Twitter.
He said the vaccines have been inspected by the government, and the authorities will carefully observe the health of all those vaccinated.
Earlier this month, many countries temporarily suspended the use of AstraZeneca’s vaccine over fears it might cause blood clots.
The premier told reporters that he felt no pain or discomfort and urged the people to get immunized.
Taiwan has designated 57 hospitals for the vaccine rollout. It received the first batch of 117,000 doses on March 3.
Authorities have prioritized health workers and allied staff at hospitals, clinics, and quarantine centers for vaccination.
The government has signed contracts to buy at least 10 million vaccine doses from Oxford-AstraZeneca, 5.05 million from Moderna and 4.76 million doses of unspecified brands through the World Health Organization-led COVAX program.
One of the least affected, Taiwan has reported 1,006 COVID-19 cases and 10 related deaths.
The Central Epidemic Command Center said it has established the V-Watch System for health reporting after the COVID-19 vaccination on Taiwan CDC’s official LINE chatbot.
The system allows members of the public to regularly report their health status after they are inoculated.