The public is advised not to be complacent about Covid-19 infection. Many questions abound on whether one should still go for their booster shot, and these questions are coming from those who have yet to get their first booster.
The advice from medical experts is to get the first booster as evidence has shown that it reduces the severity of the disease, as well as reducing the risk of hospitalisation if one does get infected.
Do be aware that the vaccines do not prevent a person from getting infected, but do reduce the severity and risk of mortality.
We know that the science behind Covid-19 is evolving constantly as our experience grows, and more data will be available as time goes by.
There are those who have been waiting for an Omicron-specific vaccine to be made available, and there are those who feel that the vaccines do not protect against getting infected with the BA.4 and BA.5 variants.
The virus is constantly evolving, and we will be faced with even more new variants. There will be the never-ending effort to get a variant-specific vaccine out in time before another new variant surfaces.
In the meantime, those who are above the age of 60, as well as those with comorbidities are encouraged to get their second booster shots, which are available at clinics under the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme (PICK).
Just log on to your MySejahtera to book your slots, or alternatively, contact any nearby vaccination centre GPs for an appointment.
To those who have yet to get their first booster, you are advised to get the shots as the immunity obtained from the first two doses will have already waned by now.
We are at the moment facing a high number of Covid-19 cases, along with many influenza-like illnesses (ILIs), and it is best not to overload the health care system with such cases, which will deprive medical care for those who need it urgently.
Dr Koh Kar Chai is president of the Malaysian Medical Association (MMA).
- This is the personal opinion of the writer or publication and does not necessarily represent the views of CodeBlue.