HomeAsian NewsTaiwan launches first domestic vaccine to bypass vaccine problem

Taiwan launches first domestic vaccine to bypass vaccine problem

On Monday, President Tsai Ing-wen was one of the first people to receive a vaccine developed by Taipei-based Mijin Vaccine Bioproducts.

Taiwan began to manage its first domestically developed Covid-19 vaccine on Monday as it seeks to rely more on local options after working to ensure adequate supplies of major international vaccines.

On Monday, President Tsai Ing-wen was one of the first people to receive a vaccine developed by Taiwan’s Beijin Vaccine Biological Products Company. The company has not completed the Phase 3 trial of its vaccine, but has obtained emergency use authorization to start vaccination.

After the government imposed a soft lockdown in May in response to the island’s worst outbreak since the first appearance of the new coronavirus, the economy remains sluggish, a move to speed up the launch of its domestic vaccine. According to data from the Centers for Disease Control, buying enough vaccines for 23.5 million people has proven to be a challenge. As of Wednesday, only 3% of the population had been fully vaccinated — one of the countries with the lowest rates in the world’s advanced economies. one. Less than 40% of the public received a dose.

It is not clear whether a large part of the public will agree to receive Medigen vaccine, and Cai Chongxin’s high-profile public vaccination aims to encourage acceptance. The government has ordered a total of 5 million doses from the company, and more than 600,000 doses have been available for use since Monday. Except for 30,000, everyone else has been assigned to the recipient.

The Medigen technology is a recombinant protein-based vaccine, similar to the vaccine developed by Novavax Inc., with an effective rate of 90% in trials conducted in the United States and Mexico with nearly 30,000 people.

The company said that the level of antibodies produced by the vaccine is more than three times the level of antibodies produced by the AstraZeneca vaccine, and has exceeded the threshold set by the Taiwanese health authorities. The antibody level is regarded as an indicator of the vaccine’s ability to fight the virus, but it is not equivalent to the actual efficacy. Large-scale clinical trials are the only way to determine whether experimental immunization helps reduce the incidence of Covid in vaccinated people compared to unvaccinated people. Medigen has not yet completed its trials.

There are still doubts about locally developed solutions. A panel of experts met in July to evaluate Medigen’s emergency use authorization. According to a statement from the Taiwan Food and Drug Administration, two of the 20 experts who voted refused to approve the vaccine.

Last week, a similar group refused to grant an EUA to the Taipei-based United Biomedical Company’s vaccine, citing failure to produce enough antibodies. According to the Taipei-based Central News Agency, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said that after United Biomedical Corp. called for a second opportunity for its vaccine, the company could appeal its decision.

The government ordered about 16 million doses of vaccines from AstraZeneca and Moderna this year, but only about 4 million doses have arrived. Another 5.9 million jabs were donated between the United States, Japan and Lithuania.

Earlier this year, Taiwan was forced to rely on the help of companies and private sectors to purchase vaccines from BioNTech after months of complex negotiations. Officials accused the German company’s Chinese distributor, Shanghai Fosun Pharmaceutical Group, of blocking the deal. Shanghai Fosun denied any wrongdoing and expressed its willingness to sell vaccines to Taiwan.

It wasn’t until Taiwan’s largest company TSMC, Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., Ltd. founder Guo Taiming and the Buddhist Tzu Chi Foundation intervened as the intermediary of Shanghai Fosun that the transaction was finally reached. Each purchased 5 million doses and they will donate to the government.

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