in Hong Kong, the population shuns vaccination

« The vaccines all have an expiration date and we are not sure we can replenish stocks. Vaccination centers administering BioNTech will stop functioning after September », warned doctor Thomas Tsang Ho Fai at the end of May, a member of the government team which manages the vaccination campaign, indignant on the airwaves of the public service RTHK (Radio-Television Hongkong), that Hong Kong was not using its doses then even that ” the whole world was fighting for it ».

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Hong Kong is indeed one of the rare territories on the planet to have an overabundance of doses to vaccinate its entire population (7.5 million inhabitants). The Chinese Special Administrative Region, which is endowed with a high degree of autonomy, has ordered 7.5 million doses of the Chinese Sinovac vaccine, as well as 7.5 million doses of doses of the BioNTech vaccine, produced by Pfizer and distributed by Fosun, not available in mainland China.

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Despite the possibility of choosing between two vaccines of different technology, the opportunity to be vaccinated for free and the strong resumption of the epidemic in Taiwan and Singapore, Hong Kong people are reluctant to be bitten.

Position de « wait and see »

On Wednesday May 26, three months after the start of the mass vaccination campaign, barely 12% of the population was fully vaccinated, 17% having received at least one dose. In view of the numerous public vaccination centers which are almost empty, the priorities initially granted to certain professions and to the oldest people were very quickly lifted. And from Friday, May 28, Chinese citizens (from mainland China) non-residents but present in Hong Kong with work visas also have access to vaccines dispensed in Hong Kong, as do refugees, who were deprived of them until now. now. The last category that cannot yet be vaccinated is that of 12-16 year olds (with the BioNtech vaccine).

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« I prefer to wait a little longer. There is no emergency, after all: there are almost no more cases in Hong Kong and traveling remains far too complicated for the moment with this mandatory quarantine at the hotel. [d’une à trois semaines selon les pays d’origine] », says Carol Lai Pui-yee, an academic in her sixties. She believes that the government has not convinced on the absence of risks associated with vaccination. ” There were at least twelve deaths among those vaccinated. These cases have not been fully clarified and doubts persist in the community ”, she adds.

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