HONG KONG, Feb. 27 (Xinhua) -- A total of 585,000 doses of the Comirnaty COVID-19 vaccine procured by the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) government arrived in Hong Kong from Germany on Saturday.
These were among the first batch of 1 million doses of the Comirnaty vaccine, developed by Fosun Pharma and BioNTech, delivered to Hong Kong. The remaining doses will arrive in early March, a spokesman for the HKSAR government said.
After the arrival of the Comirnaty vaccine, staff carried out stringent checking and inspection of the vaccine to ensure that it complies with the product specifications and that the transportation process follows the relevant cold-chain requirements.
As the vaccine has to be stored in a freezer at a temperature of -70 degrees centigrade, the HKSAR government has made appropriate arrangements, including placing the vaccines in designated storage facility and keeping all the vaccines in validated freezers to ensure the proper storage condition of the vaccines in accordance with the temperature indicated by the drug manufacturer.
"Following the arrival of the Comirnaty vaccine, we will open the online booking system next week for the public to make appointments to receive the Comirnaty vaccine. Detailed arrangements will be announced at a suitable time," the spokesman said.
Comirnaty vaccine received authorization for emergency use in Hong Kong after the advisory panel on COVID-19 vaccines reviewed its clinical data, the overseas authorization obtained, and other information relevant to the safety, efficacy and quality of the COVID-19 vaccine.
At present, the COVID-19 vaccines purchased in advance by the HKSAR government are the inactivated virus vaccine from Sinovac Biotech (Hong Kong) Limited, the nucleic acid vaccine from Fosun Pharma and BioNTech, and the viral vector vaccine from AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford.
Hong Kong received from the Chinese mainland the first batch of 1 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines produced by Sinovac Biotech on Feb. 19.
The HKSAR government has launched a free COVID-19 vaccination program, under which people may receive the jabs at five community vaccination centers and 18 general out-patient clinics of Hong Kong's Hospital Authority.