Malaysia Covid Booster Rate Exceeds US, But Far Behind UK

As of Jan 8, Malaysia has boosted 23.5% of its total population, compared to Australia (13.8%), the US (22.7%), Germany (42.4%), and the UK (52.1%).

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 11 — Malaysia’s Covid-19 booster vaccination rate exceeded the United States’ from January 7, but is less than half of the United Kingdom’s.

According to global tracker Our World In Data, Malaysia — which started rolling out booster or third coronavirus vaccine doses since October 13 last year — reached 23.5 per cent booster coverage of its total population as of January 8.

America — with a population about 10 times larger relative to Malaysia — has covered a slightly smaller proportion of its population with Covid-19 booster vaccination at 22.7 per cent as of January 8 after rolling out third doses from August 14 last year. 

The UK launched their booster rollout on September 30, 2021, just a fortnight earlier than Malaysia’s October 13 start date. However, despite a population about double that of Malaysia, the UK has achieved booster coverage more than double of Malaysia at 52.1 per cent as of January 8.

Germany and France — which initiated Covid-19 booster campaigns in August — also have higher coverage than Malaysia at 41.3 per cent and 36.7 per cent respectively as of January 6.

Australia — which started rolling out Covid-19 boosters on October 13, the same time as Malaysia — currently has the lowest coverage compared to the UK, Germany, France, Malaysia, and the US. Australia has 13.8 per cent coverage as of January 8.

Despite lower booster rates than the UK, Germany, and France, Malaysia has fully vaccinated a bigger share of its population at 78 per cent, indicating hesitancy specifically towards third shots. 

Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin said recently that four vaccination centres (PPVs) with higher capacities would be set up in the Klang Valley from January 15. Senior citizens aged 60 years and older, as well as adults double-vaccinated with Sinovac, are required to get their boosters before February 28 to maintain their fully vaccinated status on MySejahtera.

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