Expats in Tianjin offered novel coronavirus jabs

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Tianjin began providing novel coronavirus vaccines on Thursday for foreigners aged 18 and above in the city.

They can make appointments through their employers or designated institutions, local authorities said.

The appointments for voluntary vaccination are open to foreigners who work, study or live in Tianjin. Inactivated vaccines will be used, and two doses are required within two to four weeks. The vaccine may vary according to market supply, the authorities said.

Those who have joined China’s social medical insurance can get the vaccination free of charge by presenting an insurance document at the vaccination site. Those who have not should pay by themselves.

After making an appointment, foreigners should receive their vaccinations at the arranged time and site after presenting their passports or other identity documents, and their valid stay or residence permits. Vaccination sites have been set up in all districts of Tianjin.

Foreigners should report their health condition, history of allergies, illnesses and abnormal reactions to any vaccine, so that doctors can decide whether they should be given the shot. A personal responsibility statement for all risks associated with vaccination and a form verifying informed consent need to be signed before vaccination.

Those who get a shot will be asked to stay at the vaccination site for 30 minutes for observation and told to avoid contacting any known and common allergens for a week. It is suggested they seek medical treatment and report to vaccination sites if they have any abnormal reaction, such as fever.

Wearing masks, keeping social distance, washing hands frequently and other measures continue to be required after receiving the vaccine.

Gu Qing, director of Tianjin’s Municipal Center for Disease Control and Prevention, said Tianjin plans to finish vaccinating its 6.1 million people aged 18 to 59-about 40 percent of its population-by the end of this month. He added that the supply of vaccines in Tianjin is sufficient.

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