Verum woke up to a low humming sound coming from her trusty crystal ball. She opened her eyes and rubbed them. Her corner of the Mystical dorm room was flooded with a blue glow. She yawned and thought to herself, “There’s more vaccination news! Yesterday we got an update from Canada. Now, I’m excited to know more about today’s story.”
Verum walked to her crystal ball and closed her eyes. She focused on understanding the news. It was rather complex.
“What’s the news, Verum?” said Orak.
“Well, to put it shortly, questions are being raised about the efficacy of Chinese Covid-19 vaccines like Sinovac and Sinopharm,” said Verum, “Let’s start at the beginning.”
“The Covid-19 pandemic broke out in Wuhan, China, and later spread all over the world,” started Verum, “To deal with the rising infections, hospitalizations, and deaths, the development of vaccines was extremely important. But when these vaccines were developed, richer countries ended up buying most of the first batches.”
“Yes, I’m following,” said Orak with interest.
“China, too, developed vaccines. According to clinical trials, Sinovac and Sinopharm have shown 50-79% efficacy in preventing infections with symptoms. They are even more effective at preventing hospitalizations,” explained Verum, “So, more than 30 Asian countries, especially the not-so-rich ones, turned to Chinese vaccines. They either bought the vaccines or received them as donations.”
“Indonesia is one of the largest buyers of the Sinovac vaccines in the world,” added Orak.
“Yes, you’re right. The country ordered 125 million doses,” said Verum, “Along with Indonesia, Thailand and Malaysia also used Chinese vaccines on a large scale. However, there is a problem.”
“Oh no, I don’t like the sound of that,” said Orak.
“Many health workers in Indonesia and Thailand contracted Covid-19 despite having received two shots of the Chinese vaccines,” said Verum, “So, now, these countries have announced changes in their vaccine policies. In Thailand, residents will now receive a Sinovac and an AstraZeneca shot instead of two Sinovac shots.”
“And in Indonesia?” said a worried Orak. The country was going through an oxygen crisis due to rising Covid-19 infections.
“Indonesia will be giving Moderna shots as boosters (an additional vaccine shot given to boost immunity),” said Verum, “This has raised questions about the efficacy of the Chinese vaccines. Of course, further research must be conducted.”