Laos expedites COVID-19 vaccination program

2021-05-18 08:36:36 GMT2021-05-18 16:36:36(Beijing Time) Xinhua English

VIENTIANE, May 18 (Xinhua) -- The Lao government is speeding up the rollout of the COVID-19 vaccination program to ensure 50 percent of the Lao population is inoculated by the end of 2021.

Vaccination is one of the best ways to contain the spread of COVID-19, Viengkhan Phixay, director of the Mother and Child Health Center under the Lao Ministry of Health, was quoted by local daily Vientiane Times as saying on Tuesday.

"If Lao people receive two doses of vaccine, severe symptoms of the disease will not occur and it won't be fatal. The pace of the spread of the virus in immunized people will drop by 50 percent," she said.

At the moment, the total stock of vaccines in Laos stands at more than 1.53 million doses, which should cover 760,000 people or 10.3 percent of the total population.

So far, more than 500,000 people have received the first dose of the vaccine, while more than 92,200 people have received the second dose.

Laos has received vaccines as assistance from countries including China and Vietnam.

As of Tuesday, the total number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Laos is 1,697, with 999 people undergoing treatment in hospitals.

Laos reported its first two confirmed cases of COVID-19 on March 24 last year. Enditem