Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul attended a contract-signing ceremony in which the Ministry of Public Health agreed to buy from AstraZeneca long acting antibodies (LAAB) to protect patients with impaired immunity from COVID-19.
Mr Anutin said that earlier the Department of Disease Control under the Ministry of Public Health had procured the viral vector COVID-19 vaccine of AstraZeneca to develop immunity among local people.
However, some groups of vaccine recipients either were unable to develop the immunity or lost their antibodies quickly and thus risked severe illness or fatality after infection, he said. The minister referred to people with chronic renal diseases and those who received immunosuppressive agents after their organ or bone marrow transplantation.
Therefore, the Center for COVID-19 Situation Administration assigned the Ministry of Public Health to procure LAAB to help the vulnerable groups of people, he said.
The signed contract was for the purchase of about 250,000 doses. It did not require an additional budget because the procurement would replace a part of COVID-19 vaccine doses earlier ordered from AstraZeneca, Mr Anutin said.
He expected the first lot of 7,000 LAAB doses to be delivered within this month. (TNA)