Macao kicks off COVID-19 vaccination
Published: Feb 09, 2021 02:56 PM

Macao Special Administrative Region Chief Executive Ho Iat Seng receives his first Sinopharm COVID-19 dose on Tuesday morning. Photo: Bee video

The Macao Special Administrative Region (SAR) officially kicked off its COVID-19 vaccination on Tuesday morning. The city's senior government officials, including Chief Executive Ho Iat Seng, took the lead and received their first doses of the Sinopharm vaccines.

Ho said that he didn't feel anything unusual during the injection, and definitely plans to take another dose on time.

The vaccine will be free for Macao residents, non-local employees, non-local students studying in the SAR and prisoners, Ho announced on Monday. Non-Macao residents staying in the city legally need to pay for it on their own, with each dose costing 250 patacas ($31.3).

Based on Macao's vaccination plan, high-risk occupations such as frontline medical staff, security staff, hospital staff, aviation personnel, and people who are going to travel to other places, will be the first to receive the vaccines. Ordinary citizens will be able to receive the vaccine for free starting on February 22.

The vaccination will cover people aged between 18 and 60 years old, and people aged above 60 but in good health and at a higher risk of exposure.

The first batch of 100,000 doses of Sinopharm's COVID-19 vaccines arrived in the city on February 6. The second batch of 100,000 mRNA vaccine doses produced by Fosun Pharma and BioNTech is expected to arrive before March. 

Macao also ordered recombinant adenovirus vector vaccines, which are expected to arrive in the third quarter, according to media reports.  

As of Monday, Macao has seen no local cases reported for 316 consecutive days, and no new cases for two consecutive days. A total of 48 confirmed cases were reported in the city, and 46 have been discharged after recovery.

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