China is already injecting citizens with a coronavirus vaccine even when it is still under development with phase-3 trials underway in United Arab Emirates (UAE). China's vaccine has been developed by state-owned Sinopharm whose clinical trials are still underway but is being administered to people ever since July 22, as revealed by a Chinese health official on state television. The official said that people were being vaccinated since July 22 under emergency use authorisation.
According to a report in the Washington Post, China's coronavirus vaccine development head Zheng Zongwei on state television said that some medical workers, government officials were administered vaccine since July 22. The official added that the vaccine will be given to more people in the coming days.
"In order to prevent the disease spread in the fall and winter, we are considering a moderate expansion in the programme… The purpose would be to first build and immunity barrier among special groups in the population," The Washington Post quoted Zongwei as saying.
No new locally-transmitted coronavirus cases in China
Meanwhile, no new locally-transmitted coronavirus cases were reported in the Chinese mainland, the National Health Commission said on Tuesday. A total of 14 confirmed cases arriving from outside the mainland were reported on Monday. No new suspected cases nor deaths related to the disease were reported on the mainland, it added.
Of the new imported cases, four were reported in Sichuan, three in Guangdong, two each in Shanghai and Shaanxi, and one each in Tianjin, Hebei and Liaoning, the commission said.
As of Tuesday, the total number of coronavirus cases on the mainland stood at 84,981, including 386 patients who were still being treated, with 10 in severe condition.
Altogether 79,961 people had been discharged after recovery, and 4,634 had died of the disease on the mainland, the commission said. There were two suspected COVID-19 cases on the mainland, it added.
According to the commission, 12,370 close contacts were still under medical observation. Also on Monday, 16 new asymptomatic cases, all from outside the mainland, were reported.
The commission said 374 asymptomatic cases were still under medical observation.