China accelerates COVID-19 vaccination in rural areas

Read Time:4 Minute, 5 Second has vaccinated more than 100 million people and is still enlarging the scale of the
vaccination program as an effort to build a massive immunity shield. In recent weeks, the
country has accelerated the vaccination work to wider groups of people, including those
in rural areas and more remote regions.
Chinese experts have estimated that to achieve herd immunity, 80 percent of the
population needs to be vaccinated, which means more than 1 billion people in China
have to get the COVID-19 vaccine.
China’s maximum capability for vaccination is 10 million shots daily, so it would take 100
days to reach the 1 billion goal, Shao Yiming, a physician and immunologist at the
Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, was quoted by the China News
Service as saying on Sunday.
To promote the vaccination work in rural regions, medical personnel and local officials
often need to make more efforts and show extra patience and caution in order to ease
the doubts and confusion among residents.
In Linquan county, East China’s Anhui Province, to help villagers, especially those who
do not have smartphones and are not well informed, the rural doctors bring vaccination
materials to them and explain the vaccination in detail.
“Luckily, a few farsighted villagers registered to get vaccinated at first and they said there
were no adverse reactions and no fees charged. After that, other villagers poured into the
center,” a local member of the staff surnamed Yao at Chengdong Street Health Center
told the Global Times on Wednesday.
Linquan County aims to inoculate more than 40 percent of its permanent resident
population by June 20 this year, which is about 755,900 people.
“To dispel the concerns of villagers, the village cadres volunteered to take the lead in
vaccination,” an official surnamed Liu who is in charge of vaccination in Facheng town
under Haiyang, East China's Shandong Province, told the Global Times on Tuesday.
“The county government also invited voice actors to record audio explaining the
vaccination process and played the audio on loudspeakers in each village,” Liu added.
Liu said that the mass vaccination in the town began on March 23, targeting villagers
between the ages of 18 and 59. “The villagers are highly motivated and it wasn’t hard to
mobilize them. After receiving notification from our staff, they go to the township hospital
to get vaccinated,” an official from one of the villages under Facheng town told the Global
To help villagers understand the COVID-19 vaccines, doctors and nurses who know both
putonghua and local ethnic languages have been dispatched to vaccination stations
temporarily set up in villages and towns in Northwest China’s Xinjiang Uygur
Autonomous Region in recent days.
The region wants to vaccinate about half of its population. The promotion is all-around,
from TV and radio to WeChat posts in different languages to underline the importance of
vaccination, said Wang Juan, a vice director at Aksu No.1 People’s Hospital.

“It turns out many local residents are willing to get the shots,” Li Yanli, head nurse at the
Aksu No.1 People’s Hospital, told the Global Times. “The villagers have work to do in the
daytime, so they often come to vaccination stations after work. Our medical personnel
have had to stay very late recently.”
However, mass vaccination does not mean a loosening of standards. Before residents
can get the shot, they need to go through a strict review process. Medical staff check
blood pressure, temperature and other disease records, and consent forms must be
“Sometimes we feel the process is too complex and tiring, but we all understand we have
to this work,” Li said.
Yang Ji, a resident of Zengba Village in Nyingchi, Southwest China's Tibet Autonomous
Region received her first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine on March 23. Since last week,
her county has carried out vaccinations, organizing for villagers from each village to take
turns to go to the county hospital to get the shots.
“Our village's vaccine promotion team consists of seven people, including two doctors
stationed in the village. They not only make door-to-door visits, but also give vaccination
tips to each villager through WeChat,” she said.
Yang Ji said the villagers were initially excited and nervous when they heard the news
that they would soon be able to receive the vaccine. “We knew it was an important barrier
to protect us from infection, but after all, we live in the highlands and were worried that
the vaccination would induce some specific diseases for us.”
To her relief, the doctors at Zengba Village patiently responded to the heated discussions
and occasional concerns of the villagers, telling them what preparations they needed to
make and what conditions make vaccination unsuitable.
Yang said she feels good so far after the vaccination.
Source: Global Times

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