As mentioned previously, Taiwan suffered a major COVID-19 outbreak in May. There have been over 13,000 cases and 700+ deaths since then compared to the 1,300 and 12 in the first seventeen months of the pandemic. This is what happens when you have selfish and arrogant people (read: rich jerks) who “think” rules don’t apply to them. I really hope they’re held legally and financially accountable for the deaths they caused.
The good news: the CECC’s strict Level 3 measures and almost total public compliance have brought things under control. We went from a peak of over 500 new infections per day to less than 30 per day for a week, and nearly all the newly reported infections are among those already in quarantine. Things have improved enough that the CECC may drop the country to Level 2, allowing some businesses to reopen and activities to resume.
Taiwan’s level of vaccinations increased from 2% to 20% over the past seven weeks, thanks in large part to donations from Japan and purchased vaccines finally arriving, and despite PRC’s efforts to prevent Taiwan from obtaining vaccines. Beijing also failed to entice Taiwanese people to demand the mainland’s vaccine.
My employer helped me get on the waiting list and I expect to receive my first shot within the next three weeks. Studies have shown that mixing different types doesn’t harm their efficacy at all, so I’ll take any of them except those from Russia or the PRC. I’ll even take Medigen’s vaccine, now that the Taiwan CDC has given it approval. It has been shown to produce the same anti-bodies as the Astrazeneca and other vaccines. Approval for Medigen’s vaccine was delayed because of a problem with testing, another selfish individual. An ex-politician found out he was getting the placebo, so he went out and paid for an actual vaccine. This made the test data questionable, delaying its approval.
TAIPEI, July 19 (Reuters) – Taiwan’s government on Monday approved the emergency use and production of Medigen Vaccine Biologics Corp’s (6547.TWO) COVID-19 vaccine candidate, a major step in the island’s plans to develop its own vaccines to protect against the coronavirus.
The vaccine candidate has yet to finish clinical trials and no efficacy data is available, but Taiwan’s health ministry said studies so far have shown that antibodies created by the shot have been “no worse than” those created by AstraZeneca’s (AZN.L) vaccine.
Medigen has applied to do Phase 3 testing in Paraguay, one of Taiwan’s few allied nations in South America. South America is currently the hardest hit continent, and an influx of affordable vaccines is direly needed. Unlike last year when G7 nations wanted developing nations to take the risk of vaccine experimentation, a Phase 3 trial means most of the risk has already been addressed. This is now about testing efficacy, not safety.