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Free vaccines rolling out in several cities

By Ma Zhenhuan in Hangzhou| chinadaily.com.cn| Updated: March 10, 2021 L M S

Authorities in Shaoxing, Zhejiang province, announced on Tuesday that the city had begun giving free COVID-19 vaccines to residents.

The vaccinations will be available to people over 18 years old, with no restriction on household registration. They will need their ID cards to make an appointment at a community medical institution or designated hospital in the city.

Wenzhou, a city in Zhejiang, started a free vaccination program on Friday, according to a report by thepaper.cn.

Vaccinations for people under 18 years of age will be carried out in the future depending on progress in vaccine research and development, as well as on clinical trial results, according to the Wenzhou authorities.

The vaccines were previously given to priority groups first, including those engaged in handling imported cold-chain products and people working in port inspection and quarantine, aviation, public transport, fresh markets, medical treatment and disease control.

More than 270,000 doses of vaccine have been administered in Shaoxing as of Sunday, and more than 500,000 inoculations have been carried out in Wenzhou as of Thursday — neither with major side effects detected, according to the two anti-pandemic authorities in the city government.

"More than 7 million people in Wenzhou are eligible for vaccination; therefore each district is expected to set up one or two temporary vaccine sites in public areas, such as exhibition halls or sports venues, to meet the huge demand," said a local health commission official in Wenzhou.

On Tuesday, Ningbo, a coastal city in Zhejiang, also announced that it will roll out free vaccines soon.

Cai Jingwen contributed to the story.