Taiwan starts COVID-19 vaccinations

Taiwan has started inoculating its citizens with the coronavirus vaccine developed by British pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca and Oxford University.

Medical workers began receiving the AstraZeneca shot at hospitals across Taiwan on Monday.

Taiwan has received 116,500 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine so far.

Premier Su Tseng-chang was among the first to get vaccinated. After receiving the jab, he said that he wanted everyone to see him and feel safe about getting inoculated.

Su promised to verify the safety of the vaccines that are being imported. He also vowed to protect the health of frontline medical workers.

Authorities in Taiwan say only about 30 percent of healthcare workers were willing to get a shot, as of last week. The authorities are encouraging people to get vaccinated.

The use of the AstraZeneca shot in Taiwan comes after some European countries temporarily stopped administering the firm's vaccine. The suspensions followed reports that some people developed blood clots after receiving the jab.

The European Medicines Agency investigated the cases and said on Thursday that the AstraZeneca vaccine is safe. France and Germany resumed using it, after the drug regulatory agency's announcement.