Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha expressed doubts on Tuesday about the reliability of media reports of the temporary suspension of vaccination in several medical facilities in the country, due to delays of COVID-19 vaccine deliveries.
Earlier this week, several media reported that twenty hospitals in Bangkok postponed coronavirus jab appointments due to shortages of vaccines.
"I'm not blaming anyone. Others may not have the same understanding of the issue because the information is being passed through too many channels," the prime minister was quoted as saying at a morning briefing at the parliament by the Bangkok Post newspaper.
He also noted that he instructed the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA), which he leads, to distribute the batches of COVID-19 shots at its disposal to the country’s regions in line with demand and urgency.
"We may have the capacity to administer 100,000 doses in a single day. But where are the vaccines for appointments on other days?" he said, adding that from now on the appointments for vaccination would be based on the number of vaccines in each arriving batch.
According to Chan-o-cha, the government secured 100 million coronavirus vaccines to cover up to 50 million people, or 70% of the Thai population over 2021.
At the CCSA briefing, a spokesperson for the authority said that during the vaccination of workers on the "front line" of the fight against the pandemic, held from February 28-early June, and the countrywide immunization, which kicked off on June 7, more than 6.5 million doses were administered. From June 7 to June 14, more than 2.4 million doses were used, and 323,000 shots were done on Monday.
In some provinces vaccination is progressing faster, including on the island of Phuket, where over 61% of the population has been vaccinated so far and aims to vaccinate 70% of the population by late June to reopen the area for vaccinated tourists without a mandatory two-week quarantine, according to the spokesperson.