HK to start COVID-19 vaccinations in February

The city will prioritise high-risk groups of people like healthcare workers and carers at nursing homes

HK to start COVID-19 vaccinations in February

Hong Kong this week announced plans to begin a nationwide COVID-19 vaccination campaign, joining many other nations such as Singapore in the global fight against the pandemic.

The city has been finalising details of the campaign and will likely begin mass vaccinations in February, said Patrick Nip Tak-kuen, Hong Kong’s secretary for the civil service.

The government will prioritise high-risk groups of people for the first vaccine rollout, namely:

  • Healthcare workers
  • Those working in care facilities for the elderly and people with disabilities
  • Residents aged 85 years or above

Read more: Can employers force staff to take the COVID-19 vaccine?

The city has approved the use of three vaccines – those from Pfizer-BioNTech, AstraZeneca-Oxford  and Sinovac.

Residents will receive vaccinations at varied facilities, depending on the scientific specifications of the jabs, said a government medical adviser. Officials plan to dose out Sinovac and AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccines at Department of Health and Hospital Authority clinics, as well as approved private clinics.

Meanwhile, vaccines from Pfizer-BioNTech will be administered in community halls, reported the South China Morning Post.

The news comes just as the city recorded it’s lowest number of cases since November, in what was labelled a ‘very worrying’ fourth wave of infections.

Read more: Singapore: No need to change job scope of unvaccinated workers

Over in Singapore, healthcare workers at the National Centre for Infectious Diseases were the first to receive the first dose of the vaccine on December 30.

The vaccine is ‘strongly encouraged’ but voluntary in the city-state, with priority given to the most at-risk groups like healthcare workers, frontline personnel, the elderly and the vulnerable.

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