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S’pore residents can now choose which Covid-19 vaccine to take; Moderna jabs given at 11 centres

Linette Lai on 13 Apr 2021

The Straits Times


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SINGAPORE - People who want to choose which Covid-19 vaccine to take can now refer to the Ministry of Health's (MOH's) website, where the full list of vaccination centres and vaccines has now been made available.


The Moderna shot is being given at 11 out of the 38 centres, while the rest are using the Pfizer-BioNTech product.


People are able to pick which vaccination centre or polyclinic they wish to go to, although a notice on the site adds that certain centres may have limited slots "due to the strong demand for Covid-19 vaccinations in Singapore and limited supplies".


The Pfizer shot was the first Covid-19 vaccine to be approved for use in Singapore, with the earliest shipments arriving here last December.


Last month, MOH announced that the Moderna vaccine would be administered at four community clubs: Hong Kah North, Marsiling, Punggol 21 and Radin Mas.


Another seven centres have since been added to this list. They are Kolam Ayer, Buona Vista, Potong Pasir, Tampines East, Woodlands, Kebun Baru and Yew Tee.


All other vaccination centres, polyclinics and selected Public Health Preparedness Clinics will continue to offer the Pfizer vaccine.


"Each vaccination centre will only stock and administer one type of vaccine," MOH said in a statement last month. "Individuals must select the same vaccination centre for both their first and second appointments, when booking via the national appointment system."


Both the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines use the newer messenger RNA (mRNA) technology, which involves injecting snippets of the virus' genetic material - and not the whole virus - into the body. This "teaches" cells to make a protein that triggers an immune response, producing antibodies to fight the virus.


Reported side effects from both vaccines are similar and include pain, swelling at the injection site, fatigue, headache, muscle ache, fever, chills, vomiting and joint pain after vaccination.


Their efficacy rates are also roughly similar, with Pfizer's clocking in at 95 per cent and Moderna's at 94 per cent.


However, the Pfizer vaccine requires two 30-microgram doses taken three weeks apart. In contrast, Moderna's vaccine involves two 100-microgram doses taken four weeks apart.


The Straits Times visited several vaccination centres on Tuesday (April 13), all of which saw a steady stream of people coming and going. When asked why they chose a particular centre, most people said they simply picked the location closest to their homes.


"I'm here because the centre is near my house," said Mr Toh Hock Seng, 68, who took his second shot at Teck Ghee Community Club. "The brand doesn't really matter to me."


Housewife Pang Lay Hua, 65, who was at Bishan Community Club, said: "My friend lives nearby, so I came here to take the vaccine together with her. I didn't ask which brand it was."


Source: The Straits Times © Singapore Press Holdings Limited. Reproduced with permission.



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