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Vaccinate more elderly, respiratory specialist advises govt

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Respiratory specialist Dr Manoon Leechawengongs urged the government via Facebook to administer more vaccines to elders.

Manoon cited South Korea as an example, saying its population of 52 million had a total 9.94 million patients, but there were only around 13,000 deaths.

He said that country had the lowest fatality rate in the world as most deaths were unvaccinated patients or patients who had not received a booster dose. South Korea’s daily infections have also started to decrease.

Manoon gave three reasons why South Korea has the lowest Covid-19 fatality rate:

  1. Most South Koreans are infected with the Omicron variant, which is much less severe than Delta.
  2. 86 per cent of South Koreans are fully vaccinated, with 63 per cent having already received a booster dose. Moreover, 90 per cent of elders aged over 60 have received a booster.
  3. South Koreans have received efficient vaccines, with most being administered the mRNA vaccine Pfizer, followed by AstraZeneca and Moderna. The country does not use inactivated vaccines such as Sinovac or Sinorpharm.

Manoon said 2 per cent of Thai elders have not been administered a single dose, while 10 million elders are fully vaccinated. Only 4.2 per cent have received a booster.

To reduce the fatality rate to bring it on par with South Korea, Manoon said Thailand must hasten to administer highly efficient mRNA vaccines such as Pfizer or Moderna to elders who have not received any vaccine.

Furthermore, Thailand should provide 70 per cent of the elderly with a booster dose, he advised.

Published : March 23, 2022

By : THE NATION