CORONAVIRUS/164,000 Pfizer-BNT, Moderna COVID-19 vaccine mixing doses administered

11/25/2021 06:01 PM
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CNA file photo
CNA file photo

Taipei, Nov. 25 (CNA) About 164,000 people have currently received doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech (BNT) and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines as their second jab under the newly introduced mix-and-match vaccine program, according to the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) on Thursday.

Speaking at a daily press briefing, CECC spokesperson Chuang Jen-hsiang (莊人祥) said a total of 49,916 Pfizer-BNT doses and 114,838 Moderna doses have been administered.

On Nov. 20, Taiwan began offering the two brands of COVID-19 vaccine to individuals who had received one AstraZeneca (AZ) shot at least eight weeks ago.

Previously, only front line medical workers could opt for a Moderna jab following their first AstraZeneca shot, because of supply issues during the first few months of Taiwan's vaccine rollout which began on March 22.

Meanwhile, Chuang said the CECC will hold discussions on Nov. 28 with experts to determine whether or not to permit the administering of second doses of the Pfizer-BNT vaccine to those in the 12-17 age group.

Due to concerns over the high incidence of myocarditis and pericarditis, those aged 12-17 are not currently allowed to get a second dose of the Pfizer-BNT vaccine in Taiwan, though individuals aged 18 and above can get a second jab four weeks after the first.

Myocarditis and pericarditis have been reported worldwide in recipients of mRNA COVID-19 vaccines like the Moderna and Pfizer-BNT brands, although the latter is the only COVID-19 vaccine that has been offered to the 12-17 age group in Taiwan.

According to the CECC, Taiwan took delivery of another shipment of the Pfizer-BNT vaccine Thursday morning, comprising 938,300 doses.

The shipment arrived at around 6:15 a.m. at Taoyuan International Airport on China Airlines flight CI-62, which took off from Germany's Frankfurt Airport.

It was the 13th delivery of the Pfizer-BNT vaccine Taiwan has received, and the expiration date on the latest batch of doses is March 23, 2022.

The new delivery is part of the 15 million Pfizer-BNT doses ordered by Hon Hai Precision Co.'s YongLin Charity; Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co.; and the Tzu Chi Foundation, a Buddhist humanitarian organization. The buyers donated the doses to the government for distribution.

With this shipment, Taiwan has received roughly 10.47 million Pfizer-BNT doses to date, Chuang said.

(By Chang Ming-hsuan, Chiang Hui-chun, Yeh Chen and Ko Lin)

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