Netizens clash with public health minister over Moderna comments

Thai netizens on Friday took to social media to vent their anger, after the government told them to give up their paid Moderna registrations and get Pfizer jabs from the state.

The hashtag #ขายสิทธิ์โมเดอร์นา (selling Moderna) came following comments that Anutin Charnvirakul, the Deputy Prime Minister and the Minister of Public Health, made urging people to quickly receive government-provided free Pfizer vaccines instead of waiting for the private sector to bring in Moderna.

Over nine million Thais pre-paid for the Moderna vaccines earlier this year and are still waiting to receive it.

Thai netizens blamed the government for its missteps in vaccine procurement and distribution.

“No one should pay for the right to have proper access to public health” a popular user said. “The people paid because they can’t wait. They paid for their own safety, but today they feel betrayed over and over again.”

Public Health experts told Thai Enquirer that the comments made by Anutin was not wrong.

“Yes there were problems with supply earlier on but right now to help the country, it is important that everyone who is not vaccinated get jabbed right away regardless of vaccines,” a senior doctor at Siriraj Hospital said.

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