KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 18 – The Malaysian Medical Association (MMA) today urged the government not to pull fully vaccinated status from senior citizens and Sinovac recipients who do not get a Covid-19 booster shot by February 28.
The doctors’ group pointed out that the Ministry of Health’s (MOH) policy from the start has been that a person who completes two vaccine doses is considered fully vaccinated, regardless of the vaccine type.
“As vaccinations including the booster shots are not mandatory, those fully vaccinated should get to keep their fully vaccinated status regardless of the type of vaccine they were given,” MMA president Dr Koh Kar Chai said in a statement.
“The MMA agrees that there is a need for those in the high-risk group who are eligible to get increased protection against Covid-19 with the booster shots as soon as possible, but as the boosters are also on a voluntary basis, they should be sufficiently advised and allowed time to decide on their own.”
The Malaysian Muslim Restaurant Owners Association reportedly urged the government recently to extend the deadline for third shots to May, saying that restaurant businesses would be affected if people lost their fully vaccinated status on MySejahtera.
MOH has started offering Sinovac’s vaccine at public Covid-19 vaccination centres (PPVs) in a bid to improve the booster vaccination rate.
Yesterday, Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin said MOH targets to boost 70 per cent of adults. Some 58 per cent of adults nationwide have already received additional Covid-19 vaccine doses.
As of February 16, out of some 10 million people fully vaccinated with Sinovac, about 7.1 million have received boosters, leaving slightly under three million adults who may lose their fully vaccinated status on March 1 without a third shot.