The National Olympic Committee of Cambodia (NOCC) will soon roll out a COVID-19 vaccination programme for national athletes ahead of major sports competitions abroad.
In an announcement released a few days ago, NOCC Secretary-General Vath Chamroeun revealed that the International Olympic Committee advised its members to give priority to such undertaking.
Subsequently, Prime Minister Hun Sen listed national athletes as among the priorities of Cambodia’s ongoing COVID-19 vaccination drive.
Chamroeun said the programme will cover national team members, especially the ones who are set to depart for training and competitions in other countries. Chamroeun himself received the first dose of the vaccine on Feb 11.
Last week, Cambodia started a vaccination drive after receiving 600,000 doses of the Sinopharm vaccine from China. The first recipients include government officials, soldiers and journalists.
China has promised to donate one million doses to Cambodia. Another 400,000 doses are set to be delivered anytime in the future.
Defense Minister Tea Banh, who is also president of the SEA Games Organizing Committee, already gave the green light to vaccinate more than 1,000 athletes, coaches, officials and other members of the national team, according to the NOCC.
These include the 500-member delegation that will participate in the 2021 Southeast Asian Games. The 2021 SEA Games will be held in Hanoi, Vietnam from Nov 21 to Dec 2.
Also in the list are members of the Cambodian team that will compete in the 2020 Summer Olympics. The upcoming Olympics will be staged in Tokyo, Japan from Jul 23 to Aug 8. Cambodian athletes who are scheduled for training in China, South Korea, Japan and other countries will also get their shots, according to the NOCC.
Other countries have also started vaccinating their athletes against the deadly disease.
Last week, it was reported that Lithuania has started vaccinating athletes who will represent the Baltic nation in the Tokyo Olympics. In Singapore, athletes who will go abroad for training are priority for COVID-19 vaccination.
Cambodia has recorded 479 COVID-19 cases so far.