Japan to Give COVID-19 Emergency Areas AstraZeneca Vaccine

Politics

Tokyo, Aug. 4 (Jiji Press)--The Japanese government will prioritize providing British drugmaker AstraZeneca PLC's COVID-19 vaccine to six prefectures under the novel coronavirus state of emergency, regulatory reform minister Taro Kono has said.

The state of emergency is set to run through Aug. 31 in the prefectures of Saitama, Chiba, Tokyo, Kanagawa, Osaka and Okinawa.

Kono, minister in charge of coronavirus vaccinations, said Tuesday that 2 million doses of the domestically produced AstraZeneca vaccine have been secured for distribution in August and September.

The government Friday decided to allow the AstraZeneca vaccine to be administered to people aged 40 or over in principle. People under 40 can also receive the vaccine if they cannot utilize the vaccines made by U.S. pharmaceutical companies Pfizer Inc. or Moderna Inc. due to allergies or other reasons.

The AstraZeneca vaccine "can be used to accelerate inoculations of people in their 40s, 50s and early 60s, who are more likely to develop severe symptoms with variants" than other generations, Kono told a press conference.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press