Thailand’s Thammasat University eyes Novavax’s protein subunit and second-generation mRNA vaccines
Thammasat University has officially become the latest government entity authorized to import medicines related to COVID-19 prevention and treatment, including vaccines, as announced on the Government Gazette. The announcement effectively provides a new official channel to import COVID-19 vaccines into Thailand to manufacturers that are currently dealing with government entities only.
The Royal Thai Government Gazette on Thursday published Thammasat University’s regulations on medical services and public health management during the COVID-19 pandemic, under which the university is officially an authorized government entity permitted to import medicines and vaccines.
The regulation, signed by President of the Thammasat University Council Noranit Setabutr, means the university now has the right to procure, produce, sell, import, seek authorization, and approve drugs, vaccines, and medical equipment related to COVID-19 treatment and prevention.
As part of this new mission, the university’s rector shall serve as the official representative in any businesses related to medical services and public health management during the COVID-10 pandemic, and is authorized to establish agreements with government agencies and private firms, both in Thailand and internationally.
The rector also has the authority to delegate or authorize any person or agency, either in the government or private sector within Thailand and internationally, or any university staff member to represent the university on related tasks.
The authorization effectively gives Thammasat University the ability to deal with vaccine manufacturers, who currently only sell to government entities due to the emergency use authorizations of the vaccines.
The university has previously stated it is looking to import the protein subunit vaccine from Novavax, as well as second-generation mRNA vaccines, both of which are expected to be available next year.
Government agencies and entities authorized to import COVID-19 vaccine in Thailand now comprise the Department of Disease Control; the National Vaccine Institute; the Government Pharmaceutical Organization; Thai Red Cross Society; Chulabhorn Royal Academy, and Thammasat University.
Thammasat University is a public university in Thailand governed under its own Act. The university has its own medical school within the Faculty of Medicine, which operates Thammasat University Hospital. (NNT)