KUALA LUMPUR, May 19 — The Selangor state government said it has booked 2.5 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines approved by local drug regulators.
However, Selangor state executive councillor for public health Dr Siti Mariah Mahmud refused to reveal the brand and price of the vaccine that would be procured. So far, the National Pharmaceutical Regulatory Agency (NPRA) has approved three coronavirus vaccines: Pfizer-BioNTech, AstraZeneca-Oxford, and Sinovac.
“Our initial booking is 2.5 million doses,” Selangor’s state executive councillor for public health Dr Siti Mariah Mahmud told a joint press conference today with Selangor Task Force for Covid-19 (STFC) chairman Dzulkefly Ahamd.
She added that the Covid-19 vaccination drive in Selangor will be managed by SELGATE Corporation Sdn Bhd (SELGATE), a fully owned subsidiary of Selangor State Development Corporation (PKNS).
The SELGATE vaccination programme, which is considered as a supplementary effort for the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme (PICK), is expected to begin next month.
Dr Siti Mariah also mentioned that the procurement of vaccines will be handled by SELGATE Healthcare, a subsidiary of SELGATE Corporation Sdn Bhd.
She added that the state government is focusing on industrial companies and factories that are seen to have an urgent need to obtain the Covid-19 vaccine for their employees.
Dr Siti Mariah earlier had mentioned that SELangkah, the state’s Covid-19 contact tracing app, is opening up registration to companies that are interested in purchasing coronavirus vaccines for their employees.
“A total of almost one million workers, including a total of 3,500 companies, have stated their interest to buy the vaccine,” Dr Siti Mariah added today.
According to SELangkah Vax’s website, after employers register their interest for Covid-19 vaccination for their employees, a 50 per cent deposit is required to confirm booking. The balance 50 per cent of payment must be made at least 14 days before the vaccination date.
Dr Siti Mariah, who provided the rationale behind the booking deposit fee, said: “We put that requirement because this is a commitment. We have free vaccines from the federal government. We don’t want them to register simply. We have to allocate a specific target.”
“After booking, we don’t want the employer to cancel their orders as their staff receive the free vaccine from the federal government. We will be left with extra vaccines without being used,” she added.
However, yesterday, Vaccine Minister Khairy Jamaluddin mentioned that the supply of vaccines will be prioritised for PICK as the types of Covid-19 vaccines that state governments like Selangor are trying to procure are developed by the same pharmaceutical companies supplying PICK.