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HomeNewsM'sian Government is considering to shorten AstraZeneca dose interval

M’sian Government is considering to shorten AstraZeneca dose interval

Given that the Covid-19 situation in Malaysia is not showing any sign of improvement, the authorities are currently looking into ways to expedite the vaccination process to achieve herd immunity.

According to Bernama, the Health Minister, Dr Adham Baba said that the Ministry is currently looking into shortening the time gap between the first and second dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine from 12 weeks to 6 weeks.

However, this would depend on the expert reports on the Covid-19 situation in Malaysia, and whether the recipients require a quicker maximum protection from the second dose or not.

Source: The Star

“We still need to perform ongoing genome sequencing activities to detect if there are new, more violent variants of COVID-19 that would interfere with the effectiveness of the AstraZeneca vaccine,” he said in a press conference yesterday (19 June), as reported by BERNAMA.

Dr Adham mentioned that the decision will be announced by the Special Committee of Covid-19 Vaccination (JKJAV) soon. Currently, recipients of the AZ vaccine had to wait for 12 weeks (3 months) before they were being administered the second dose.

Responding to the Government’s plan to implement the first dose strategy, he said that they Government had no plans to implement it as of now, as the supply of the vaccine in the country is sufficient.

Nonetheless, the Government is implementing the “Jab first, register later” method for those who have difficulty in the registering for the vaccination, and this is especially so for those in the rural areas.

In the press conference, he mentioned that is implementing the ‘mobile team’ which requires the cooperation from different Ministries to track those who were should receive the vaccination in the second phase of the National Immunisation Programme.

He too, gave assurance to the public that the Government, through the National Pharmaceutical Regulatory Agency (NPRA) will ensure that the vaccines administered is safe, effective and of high-quality.

He added that the Ministry arranging for the vaccination of the minors aged between 12 to 17 year-old and this category consists of estimated 3.5 million people. This group of people will be administered the Comirnaty Pfizer-BioNTech.

As of to date (19 June 2021), Malaysia had administered a total of 5,675,002 doses of vaccine.

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