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South Korea To Complete COVID-19 Vaccination to 12 Million People By June

by Jay Ahon / Mar 16, 2021 05:29 AM EDT
People wearing masks and walking in front of a banner of a Covid-19 information displayed on the wall of Seoul City Hall.

South Korea targets to vaccinate around 12 million of its citizens against coronavirus by the end of June, Authorities said in a government meeting on Monday. 

The Minister of Health and Welfare Kwon Deok-cheol added that the next phase of inoculation puts the country in its hope, closer to exiting the pandemic. 

"Our destination is clear: To get to herd immunity and return to normal life," the government official said. 

The first phase of the said vaccination campaign is focused on those who are at the nursing homes and workers aged under 65 and health care workers of all ages stationed at the COVID-19 hospitals. They belong to the category of top priority group that is set to be completed at the end of this month.

Three hundred seventy-seven thousand elderly people who are at nursing homes and long-term care facilities are expected to be vaccinated later this month. In April, vaccine rollout will continue to the 11.5 million South Koreans, including 8.58 million people aged 65 years old and above, 92,000 people in dialysis, and 12,000 citizens with respiratory conditions. 

Six hundred sixty-nine thousand four hundred citizens and workers at group homes, correctional facilities, and other areas prone to outbreaks will also get their vaccines. The rest of the groups belonging to other categories shall follow. 

However, there is a possibility that the ministry might postpone the rollout of second doses if the country will not have enough vaccines to reach its goal of inoculating 12 million people by June. The ministry said that the second doses might be given instead to those people who still need their first shots.

The country has secured more than enough vaccines for people, around 79 million, through deals with the pharmaceutical companies and the WHO-led fair vaccine access program, COVAX. The country primarily purchased the AstraZeneca and Pfizer vaccines to be given to their citizens.

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