The Kingdom’s third-dose Covid-19 vaccination drive launched on October 11, as the campaign to vaccinate the adult population of 10 million reaches out to the remaining 0.8 per cent.
Minister of National Defence Tea Banh participated in the launch of the Covid-19 booster shot campaign, remarking at the opening ceremonies that vaccines are fundamental to Cambodia’s entire pandemic containment strategy.
Tea Banh added that timely vaccinations could save the lives of many Cambodians by reducing the incidence of serious illness and deaths due to Covid-19 while also helping to reduce its spread.
“[We] are committed to vaccinating everyone who are eligible as soon as possible and achieving the plan to build herd immunity and community resilience in order to be in a position to relaunch our international and domestic tourism and socio-economic sectors as soon as possible,” he said.
The minister asked all vaccination working groups to take care in the execution of their duties and to rely on the valuable experience they gained in the first round of vaccinations this year.
“In fact, so far almost no other country has been able to provide vaccinations to their people at the same rate that Cambodia has achieved. This is due to various factors like distribution and vaccination administration capacity, which are limited in different ways depending on the country,” he said.
According to Tea Banh, the military medics will be responsible for giving booster shots to residents, including factory workers, in six of the capital’s districts and in eight other provinces.
“Cambodia has been extremely successful in vaccinating its population with campaigns completed in nearly every province. I think we can safely say that this has been great for our country and that we are so proud of our country. This is now truly one of the foremost achievements of our nation in the modern-era,” he said.
Ministry of Health spokeswoman Or Vandine was also on hand for the opening day of booster shot campaign, which was first announced on August 25.
The health ministry is also providing fresh deliveries of medical equipment and personal protective equipment along with supplies like alcohol, cotton and saline to the defence ministry’s vaccination working groups for the start of this new round of jabs.
Ith Sarath, deputy commander-in-chief of the Royal Cambodian Armed Forces who oversees the military’s vaccination efforts, announced that the military medics have been assigned to six districts in Phnom Penh – Kamboul, Dangkor, Meanchey, Por Sen Chey, Toul Kork and Russey Keo.
He noted that the total number of people in the six districts assigned to the military was 1,026,126. He said 3,578 medics divided into 152 medical teams will be deployed for vaccination operations.
On the same day, medical teams from the Phnom Penh municipal health department and the Samdech Techo Voluntary Youth Doctor Association (TYDA) also began a third round of jabs for residents in Boeung Keng Kang, Chamkarmon, Chbar Ampov, Prampi Makara and Sen Sok districts.
Residents over in Daun Penh, Chroy Changvar and Prek Pnov districts will have to wait until October 30 to begin their booster shot, which are being timed loosely to four months after receiving the second dose.
According to figures from the national Covid-19 vaccination committee, as of October 10 over 13 million people aged six and older – or 84.33 per cent of Cambodia’s entire population of roughly 16 million – had been vaccinated, with more than 11 million people having received their second dose.