Vietnam is now the 53rd country in the world achieving the goal of administering basic doses of Covid-19 vaccines for 70% of its population, according to covidvax.live, a website updating the vaccination speed worldwide every day.
Currently, only 63 out of more than 220 countries and territories providing data on Covid-19 pandemic prevention and control globally have achieved this goal, the website said.
In Asia, Vietnam's vaccination speed and quantity are higher than that of Thailand, Laos, the Philippines, India, and Indonesia. The country’s vaccine coverage has been lower than the US’s by only two grades, but 40 grades higher than Russia.
According to the figures from the National Covid-19 Vaccine Portal, nearly 150 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines have been administered to people as of December 30, including over 77 million of first shots and around 70 million second jabs. Roughly 2.8 million people have got the third dose so far.
Vietnam's Minister of Health Nguyen Thanh Long got the Covid-19 vaccine on May 6, 2021. Photo: Tran Minh
It means that some 80% of Vietnam’s 96-million population have received two shots of vaccines, surpassing the target set by the World Health Organization which stressed each country must achieve the target of having at least 40% of its population fully vaccinated by late 2021 and raise that rate to 70% by mid-2022 with a view to ending the pandemic.
Russian news agency Sputnik commented that thanks to its relentless vaccine diplomacy strategy, from a country with a low coverage of Covid-19 inoculation, Vietnam has become one of the countries having the rapidest vaccination in the world in a short time.
The vaccine diplomacy, an unprecedented diplomatic strategy in Vietnam's history, has been drastically deployed, helping the country safely adapt to and effectively control the Covid-19 pandemic, Sputnik said.
Besides, Vietnam’s vaccine diplomacy strategy facilitated the transfer of other countries’ vaccine production technologies, including Sputnik-V of Russia, Abdala of Cuba, and Covaxin of India, the news agency added.
Despite getting off to a slower start in vaccinations due to a supply shortage, from early September to December, the inoculation efforts have ramped up significantly with more vaccines available, and Vietnam hits an average of 1-1.5 million doses administered a day.
With 135 million shots of vaccines given so far, Vietnam's number of injected doses ranks 11th in the world, according to Our World In Data, behind nations such as China (2.61 billion), United States (488 million), Germany (138 million) and Russia (137 million).
Currently, first-dose coverage in Vietnam ranks fourth in the Southeast Asia region, after Singapore, Cambodia, and Brunei.
Despite its high vaccination rate, Vietnam is still seeing rising cases, hospitalizations and deaths from Covid-19, the health ministry said, adding that the deaths were primarily observed in the elderly, people with underlying diseases, or those not fully vaccinated.