All unused doses of the country’s first homegrown COVID-19 vaccine may be dumped as demand shifts to boosters targeting omicron variants rather than monovalent vaccines.
Commissioner Peck Kyong-ran of the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency said on Wednesday that there is waning demand for the SKYCovione vaccine developed by SK Bioscience based on the original virus detected in Wuhan, China.
Peck said SKYCovione will only be provided for first and second-round vaccinations, advising people to get bivalent boosters for the winter season.
The government earlier purchased ten million doses of the SK Bioscience vaccine, 610-thousand doses of which were supplied in early September, but the dwindling need for the shot prompted the company to suspend manufacturing of the product.
The KDCA chief said the contract for vaccines has been extended through June 2024, suggesting that the government may order more if the company develops a bivalent vaccine in the future.