KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 16 — Pakatan Harapan (PH) today urged the government to include its representatives in the national Covid-19 Immunisation Task Force (CITF) to implement the country’s biggest vaccination campaign in a bipartisan effort.
The PH immunisation task force highlighted the challenges in vaccinating 80 per cent of the 32-million population.
“Therefore, Pakatan Harapan urges the government to prepare sufficient immunisation sites for all citizens and non-citizens, especially those living in the interiors of the peninsula, Sabah (including the islands), and Sarawak,” the PH immunisation task force led by former Health Minister Dzulkefly Ahmad said in a statement.
“Pakatan Harapan will support the efforts of the Ministry of Health (MOH) in the national immunisation programme. The Pakatan Harapan state governments, Members of Parliament, and state assemblymen will provide cooperation and support to MOH to ensure the success of this programme because this goes beyond political differences.”
The PH MPs also called for a comprehensive communications plan to explain the coronavirus vaccination programme to all residents in Malaysia in various languages and media outlets.
Covid-19 vaccine minister Khairy Jamaluddin said in response to PH’s statement: “Thank you, PH. We need a bipartisan approach to ensure the success of NCIP/PICK.”
According to the Covid-19 vaccination programme booklet, Khairy, as the Coordinating Minister, leads the Covid-19 Immunisation Task Force (CITF) that essentially runs the entire vaccination programme.
The CITF manages health services by the MOH and non-health services. There is also a CITF project management team led by the Health deputy director-general (public health) and the deputy chief of the armed forces.
The CITF health services include vaccine logistics (transport, storage, delivery, and vaccine administration) and vaccination registration (MySejahtera, the internet, hotline, manually at public and private clinics and hospitals, and door-to-door in the interiors).
These health services also include identifying vaccine recipients, monitoring post-vaccination adverse effects, vaccine administrators, vaccination sites in MOH facilities, and human resource management.
The CITF non-health services comprise logistics like utilities, car parks, internet communications technology (ICT) and non-ICT equipment. These also include documentation, record-keeping and registration; geolocation information management; strategic communications; administrators of vaccination sites in public facilities; management of transport of vaccine recipients; management of human resources; divisions and agencies; and volunteers.
Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin announced earlier today that the first batch of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine would arrive in Malaysia on February 21, with the rollout starting on February 26. Khairy said the first shipment of the Pfizer vaccine would comprise 312,390 doses.