Govt approves Sinovac jabs 'in the public interest' - RTHK
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Govt approves Sinovac jabs 'in the public interest'

2021-02-18 HKT 12:16
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  • The approval of the Sinovac jabs comes just a day before the first doses are expected to arrive. Image: Shutterstock
    The approval of the Sinovac jabs comes just a day before the first doses are expected to arrive. Image: Shutterstock
Frances Sit reports
The government on Thursday approved the use of a Covid-19 vaccine made by mainland firm Sinovac, describing it as a necessary move and one that is in the public interest.

Experts advising the SAR authorities on coronavirus vaccines said earlier this week that with a reported efficacy rate of 62.3 percent, the protection offered by the Sinovac jabs would outweigh any risks.

A million doses of the vaccine are expected to arrive in Hong Kong on Friday, with doctors anticipating that the vaccination programme could be rolled out as soon as next week.

A government statement said the secretary for health considered it necessary to approve the Sinovac jabs after considering the experts' opinion and the public health risks posed by the pandemic.

The statement said the government will complete the necessary quality checks after receiving the jabs, and will continue to ask Sinovac to provide it with the latest clinical data.

The SAR government eventually decided not to require the mainland company to publish clinical data in medical journals before its jabs could be approved here. The vaccine has so far not been approved by the World Health Organisation.

The Sinovac vaccine is the second approved for use in the SAR, after jabs made by German firm BioNTech were earlier given the green light.