Bhutan is expected to receive the first consignment of the vaccines today

Email

According to Indian media, the consignment of 150,000 doses of Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine, Covishield for Bhutan was airlifted earlier today.

Bhutan is the first country to receive the Government of India's gift of 'Covidshield' vaccine, manufactured by the Serum Institute of India (SII). India so far has provided essential medicines and medical supplies including paracetamol, hydroxychloroquine, PPEs, N95 masks, x-ray machines and test kits to Bhutan. Both countries also entered an "Air Travel Bubble Arrangement" on October 2020.

Bhutan is planning to vaccinate all the targeted population at the same time. A nationwide vaccination program will be rolled out only when there are sufficient doses for all the targeted population. The plan is to vaccinate the entire population in their respective communities, gewogs and chiwogs in one week. During that time, movement of people will be stopped for one week.

The second dose of the vaccine will be administered in the same arrangement four weeks after the first dose. The target population to be vaccinated is around 533,000 (deducting the population which are not authorized globally such as 18 years and below, pregnant, or breastfeeding women).

For an estimated 533,000 targeted population, Bhutan need to procure around 1,200,000 doses of vaccination.

According to statement released from the Prime Minister's Office, administering the first dose for all at the same time enhances the convenience to inject the second dose together. It can help to ensure the same level of immune protection for all to be vaccinated over same period of time.

This can increase the overall efficacy of the vaccine for the general population, and minimise or blunt any outbreaks, even in the event of a worst case situation in the post vaccine era. Opting to spread the vaccine roll out over months could lead to unsystematic coverage and varying levels of protection for different individuals. This will complicate the follow up dosages and subsequent boosters if required.

It is important that the nationwide vaccination is roll out on an auspicious date. Upon consulting with Zhung Dratshang, dana (inauspicious month) falls between February 14 and March 13. The vaccination drive is expected to be carried out only after this period is over.

Meanwhile, the Prime Minister said His Majesty The King has commanded to vaccinate every Bhutanese including those living abroad.

“His Majesty said that money should not be a problem for those living abroad and ones in the country to miss the COVID vaccination. Led by the Foreign Ministry and the Bhutanese embassies, Bhutanese living abroad can get the vaccine. They can contact the embassies and should go for the vaccine. If you have to pay for the vaccine, then the embassies will facilitate. It’s His Majesty’s gift to every Bhutanese. And if the host countries are providing the vaccines for free, then please go for it without any fear and hesitancy, ” said the Prime Minister.

As per the Foreign Ministry’s records, 12,179 Bhutanese are living in 72 countries as of December 2020.

BBS reported that one of the first Bhutanese to get vaccinated is Karma Wangmo and her two children residing in Utah, western United States. The family of three are all health care workers working in different hospitals. They received their first dose of Pfizer vaccine on 26th December. Karma is a frontliner working in the healthcare industry as a phlebotomist.

Karma shared, “The moment we were vaccinated, we were kept under observation for about 15 minutes. And then we are sent a text message asking us about how we feel. As for me, I didn’t get any side effects. But I did feel little feverish and nauseous. No Bhutanese living here received the vaccine except for us, it’s only me and my two children.”



Related Posts

Thimphu and Paro lockdown extended for two more weeks

For residents in Thimphu and Paro, today will mark the 21 days of lockdown. The government has imposed an additional...

Jan 09, 2021 18:59

Second Lockdown in Bhutan - Is it going to get worse?

Earlier this morning at the first hour, the Office of Prime Minister announced on the social media page that the Thimphu...

Dec 20, 2020 18:34

The sacrifice of an extraordinary King in these difficult times

“The most powerful leadership tool you have is your own personal example.” – John Wooden

Jun 14, 2021 16:57

Bhutan is hopeful of lifting restrictions on tourism after second...

It’s been 9-week since the nationwide COVID-19 vaccination campaign in Bhutan.

Jun 04, 2021 13:20

Bhutan's Health Minister, Dechen Wangmo, elected as President for...

WHO's the decision-making body, World Health Assembly (WHA) met for its 74th session on May 24 including delegations...

May 25, 2021 13:38

How the small Himalayan nation Bhutan combats COVID-19...

With just 37 doctors, 1200 vaccination centers and less than 3000 healthcare workers, Bhutan vaccinated 93% of its...

May 12, 2021 12:54

Latest

News

The sacrifice of an extraordinary King in these difficult times

“The most powerful leadership tool you have is your own personal example.” – John Wooden

Jun 14, 2021 16:57

Bhutan is hopeful of lifting restrictions on tourism after second dose of COVID-19 vaccination

It’s been 9-week since the nationwide COVID-19 vaccination campaign in Bhutan.

Jun 04, 2021 13:20

Features

RENEW's Livelihood Project: Lighting up the lives of women

Her Majesty the Queen Mother Sangay Choden Wangchuck founded RENEW (Respect, Educate, Nurture and Empower Women) in 2004.

Jun 17, 2021 11:32

6 reasons to get your very own 'Bhutan: Travelog'

A book that will tell you everything you need to know, see, taste, do, and enjoy in Bhutan? Take my money!

Jun 16, 2021 12:37

Business

Support authentic Bhutanese handicrafts by local artisans

Whether you are interested in artisanal Bhutanese handicrafts or boutique sourced products with contemporary touch, the incredible...

Mar 25, 2021 12:09

Authentic Bhutanese Souvenirs from Eastern Bhutan

Every district and village produce distinct products in Bhutan. To encourage rural communities to produce more authentic souvenirs and...

Dec 25, 2020 22:13

Sports

What's with the unique archery culture in Bhutan?

In Bhutan, archery is more than just a sport. It is a way of life. The dancing, the singing, the drinking—it is a manifestation of the...

Apr 19, 2021 10:40

Contributing to the country through the love for football

It's been a month since the conclusion of Bhutan Premier League 2020. Daily Bhutan interviews Paro FC to find out more about the club. Below...

Dec 21, 2020 17:05

Travel

Bhutan is the perfect destination for luxury travel

The definition of 'luxury travel' has changed because of COVID-19.

Jun 01, 2021 18:32

8 most popular festivals in Bhutan that you should check out

Bhutanese festivals are colourfully vibrant affairs that draw crowds from all over the world.

May 14, 2021 17:15

Lifestyle

What are some of the Bhutanese beliefs and superstitions

For a country deeply rooted in spirituality, you will find Bhutanese especially the Buddhist rely on astrology for major events in life....

May 25, 2021 11:17

Khata: The multipurpose Bhutanese scarf

“Khatas are the Buddhist equivalent of a hallmark card.” —Married to Bhutan by Linda Leaming

Apr 29, 2021 10:53

Subscribe to our newsletter

Never miss out on new happenings and news stories!

Download Daily Bhutan Mobile App

Connecting with us just got easier!