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Generous COVID-19 Vaccine Donations to Taiwan

Generous COVID-19 Vaccine Donations to Taiwan

Taiwan has suffered from a vaccine shortage ever since COVID-19 cases skyrocketed in mid-May. Before this relatively small outbreak, Taiwan was a perfect example of a country with excellent control over the COVID-19 situation. By wearing masks and using extensive contact tracing, Taiwan managed to keep the number of cases per day below 30, a feat achieved only by a few countries so far. However, as Taiwanese citizens became more relaxed about the COVID-19 infection prevention efforts, a huge COVID-19 outbreak was bound to happen. Within a few days, Taiwan went from averaging less than 10 cases to averaging more than 100 cases, increasing the demand for vaccines tenfold. Thus, Taiwan, relatively unprepared for an outbreak, suffered from a major vaccine shortage.

However, thanks to the generosity of multiple countries, Taiwan may be able to quickly recover from this plight. Lithuania, Japan, the United States, and China all offered to donate vaccines to assist Taiwan with its outbreak. Lithuania offered to donate 20,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses to show further gratitude to Taiwan for donating 100,000 masks earlier in the pandemic. Lithuanian public officials state that they are proud to assist other countries in their times of need and look forward to improving relations between the countries. Japan also offered to donate vaccines as well. Japan donated 2.24 million vaccine doses to Taiwan as a gesture of gratitude for Taiwan’s assistance in the 2011 earthquake and tsunami disaster. The United States donated the largest amount of vaccine doses, a whopping 2.5 million vaccine doses, which arrived on the 20th of June. United States officials have announced that this donation was in gratitude of Taiwan’s efforts to assist countries all around the world with the pandemic. Although China has offered to donate vaccine doses to Taiwan, it seems unlikely that Taiwan would accept the help. Taiwanese public officials have stated that they will continue to uphold the ban on importing pharmaceutical products made in China.

As of June 27th, 2021, Taiwan has 37,000 citizens that are fully vaccinated and 2 million citizens that have taken one dose. A total of 0.2% of the Taiwan population has been fully vaccinated so far. With these generous donations, Taiwan can hopefully start vaccinating the public at a much quicker pace and eradicate COVID-19 infections from the island.

 

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