Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - AstraZeneca jabs to be rolled out in three priority areas



AstraZeneca jabs to be rolled out in three priority areas

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
A health worker prepares a dose of Sinopharm’s Covid-19 vaccine at a hospital in Phnom Penh on March 3. Hong Menea

AstraZeneca jabs to be rolled out in three priority areas

The Ministry of Health will start AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 COVISHIELD vaccinations for people aged 60 and over from March 10 in three priority areas: Phnom Penh and the provinces of Kandal and Preah Sihanouk on a voluntary basis and free of charge.

In a press release on March 6, health minister Mam Bunheng said many people in this age group were willing to use the AstraZeneca vaccine, which has caused long queues and congestion at designated centres. This prompted the ministry to temporarily suspend vaccinations on March 7.

“The ministry will resume vaccinations on March 10 to allow time for sub-national authorities in Phnom Penh, Kandal and Preah Sihanouk provinces to organise people in that age group to receive a jab,” Bunheng said.

According to the ministry, local authorities at the municipal and provincial level will invite people aged 60 and over to get vaccinated at referral hospitals and at operational district hospitals in their area.

“The AstraZeneca vaccination campaign is being provided to the most vulnerable people in Phnom Penh and Kandal and Preah Sihanouk provinces only,” it said.

The Sinopharm vaccine, donated by China, continues to be given to people between the ages of 18 and 59. It has been given to priory groups such as healthcare workers, members of the armed forces, civil servants, officials of the Cambodian Mine Action Centre, and rubbish collection workers.

The ministry said diplomats, UN officials, and international financial institution representatives, as well as international organisations and NGOs are advised to submit a list to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation.

The Calmette Hospital in Phnom Penh has been designated as a vaccination site for the government’s senior dignitaries, diplomats, UN officials, international financial institution representatives, and international organisations and NGOs.

In Preah Sihanouk province, governor Kouch Chamroeun has decided to use Techo Sen Kamakor Primary and Secondary School as a place to use both vaccines for high-risk people from March 7 onwards.

He said that the provincial administration has made efforts to vaccinate members of the armed forces and civil officials at the front line in hospitals, quarantine centres and other relevant places.

“Vaccinations are continuing as planned. But many people to be vaccinated haven’t been identified. This has caused crowding at hospitals and leading to difficulties in controlling crowds. People are not following health measures. This is risky as it could lead to the transmission of disease,” he said.

Health minister Bun Heng has agreed to prioritise vaccinations for officials and staff members involved in providing air freight services from March 9 onwards.

The health ministry said that from February 10 to March 6, it had vaccinated a total of 78,825 civilians, while the Ministry of National Defence had vaccinated 96,080 members of the armed forces.

The first shipment of 324,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine arrived in Cambodia on the night of March 2. It is the first phase of a total of 1.1 million doses to be delivered through the COVAX mechanism to Cambodia by the end of May.

Of the one million doses of Sinopharm vaccine, 600,000 arrived in Cambodia on February 7, with the rest set to arrive before the Khmer New Year in April.

MOST VIEWED

  • Cambodia on the verge of national tragedy, WHO warns

    The World Health Organisation (WHO) in Cambodia warned that the country had reached another critical point amid a sudden, huge surge in community transmission cases and deaths. “We stand on the brink of a national tragedy because of Covid-19. Despite our best efforts, we are

  • Phnom Penh curfew starts today

    A two-week curfew from 8pm to 5am starts today in Phnom Penh, a day after a sub-decree detailing administrative measures to contain Covid-19 was issued by Prime Minister Hun Sen. “Travelling in Phnom Penh is temporally banned between 8pm and 5am,” said Phnom Penh governor

  • Vaccination open to foreigners in Cambodia

    The Ministry of Health on April 8 issued an announcement on Covid-19 vaccination for foreigners residing and working in Cambodia, directing the Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training and local authorities to register them. Health minister Mam Bun Heng, who is also head of the inter-ministerial

  • Cambodia gears up for muted New Year festival

    The recent curfew and restrictions imposed in the capital and other Covid-19 hotspots were intended to break the chain of transmission, Ministry of Health spokeswoman Or Vandine said as municipal and provincial authorities issued new directives banning certain activities during the upcoming Khmer New Year

  • Culture ministry: Take Tuol Sleng photos down, or else

    The Ministry of Culture and Fine Arts has told Irish photographer Matt Loughrey to take down the photos of Khmer Rouge victims at Tuol Sleng Genocidal Museum which he allegedly colourised and altered to show them smiling. The ministry said Loughrey's work is unacceptable, affecting

  • Covid-19 vaccination now obligatory

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on April 11 issued a sub-decree making Covid-19 vaccination compulsory for individuals unless they have a medical certificate proving they have pre-existing health conditions that prevent them from doing so. «This applies to all members of the armed forces and civil servants