China to inoculate key groups with COVID-19 vaccines in winter, spring

China will start inoculating some key groups with COVID-19 vaccines in this winter-spring period, said a National Health Commission (NHC) official in Beijing on Saturday.

In a two-step vaccination drive, the vaccines will be first given to priority groups, including those engaged in handling imported cold-chain products, and people working in sectors such as port inspection and quarantine, aviation, public transport, fresh market, medical treatment and disease control, Cui Gang, an official with NHC’s disease control department, said at a press conference.

The vaccination program will also cover those who plan to work or study in countries and regions with medium or high risks of exposure to the virus, Cui added.

This will help relieve the pressure on China in preventing and controlling imported COVID-19 cases, and lower the risks of domestic outbreaks of the epidemic, said Cui.