HCTM, HKL Doctors Getting Covid-19 Shots After Complaint Over Delay

HCTM medical officers, who are also Master’s students, are now scheduled for Covid-19 vaccination today, whereas HKL says Master’s students working in the hospital are listed in the second line-listing for its inoculation programme expected to complete by April.

KUALA LUMPUR, March 16 — Seventy medical officers at Kuala Lumpur Hospital (HKL) and Hospital Canselor Tuanku Muhriz UKM (HCTM) are scheduled to receive Covid-19 vaccination after an initial delay.

An HCTM doctor told CodeBlue yesterday that 35 medical officers from the HCTM and HKL radiology departments, who are also Master’s students, had yet to receive their vaccination appointments. They are all Ministry of Health (MOH) staff, including the HCTM doctor.

“Colleagues from all the other hospitals and even private clinics are waiting for their second dose, but we have been neglected although we provide essential service to the hospital,” said the HCTM doctor on condition of anonymity.

The doctor pointed out that medical officers in the radiology department conduct ultrasound, CT scans, and procedures, coming into contact with patients for a long period of time. 

CodeBlue then contacted HKL and HCTM directors yesterday for comment. 

The complainant told CodeBlue this morning that she and the other HCTM medical officers have suddenly been added to the public teaching hospital’s emergency list for coronavirus vaccination today. 

HCTM’s corporate communications unit told CodeBlue today that HCTM is a vaccination site for teaching hospitals under the Education Ministry. A total of 4,134 frontline workers have been registered for the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine in HCTM’s vaccination programme that started on March 1.

“However, a few frontliners were not listed, including doctors or post-graduate students under UKM’s medical faculty. This is because of a delay in registration after names were given to be forwarded to the Ministry of Health and because of movements between hospitals due to study or training needs,” said HCTM.

“The vaccination programme followed SOP set by the Ministry of Health, which are to relist those who were left out and to send their names back to MOH for a new vaccination date, whereas for recipients who were rejected or absent due to health problems, new names have been listed in their place.”

HKL director Dr Heric Corray told CodeBlue today that Master’s students working in the main public hospital of the capital city are listed in the second line-listing for Covid-19 vaccination.

“There are about 8,987 frontliners, including Master’s students, spread over three lists in HKL for this vaccination programme and we expect to complete by April 2021, provided the shipments of vaccines arrive according to schedule,” said Dr Heric.

He acknowledged that Master’s students attached to HKL were not listed for jabs initially because the MOH hospital expected universities to arrange for their students’ vaccination.

“Subsequently, we decided to list them under HKL so that they are not missed out,” said Dr Heric. 

“We have increased the phase of vaccination for all frontliners. We are way ahead of schedule and we are doing good so far.” 

The HKL director told Master’s students to email the HKL deputy director of clinical support at [email protected] and to cc him in the email to verify if their names have been listed for Covid-19 vaccination.

A total of 321,333 frontliners, including health care workers, have received the first dose of their Covid-19 vaccine as of March 15, comprising 64.3 per cent of 500,000 people targeted in Phase One of the national inoculation drive to get their first dose by March 31.

Update at 1.25pm: This story was updated with HCTM’s response, in paragraphs 7 to 9.

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