Monday, April 12

Private medical practitioners grateful to be included in Covid-19 vaccination first phase

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Dr Liew (seated) giving the thumbs up while receiving the vaccination.

KUCHING (Mar 6): Private medical practitioners are grateful to be included in the first phase of Covid-19 frontliners vaccination.

Society of Private Medical Practitioners Sarawak president Dr Liew Shan Fap thanked the state government, Sarawak Disaster Management Committee (SDMC), State Health Department and Sarawak Health Director Dr Chin Zin Hing for the initiative.

This has strengthened the spirit of Public – Private partnership in Sarawak, he said.

“Not only the doctors, but also medical healthcare workers, nurses and other staff like front counter staff who have high risk of exposure to Covid-19 patients were included in the Phase 1 of vaccination programme,” he said when met after receiving the first dose of the Covid-19 vaccination at the Indoor Stadium today.

He added that since the start of the vaccination drive here, the state government and SDMC has done a very good job.

“Sarawak did quite well with the rollout of Covid-19 vaccination, and is leading in the number of frontliners vaccinated compared to other states in our country,” said Dr Liew.

When asked how he felt after receiving the jab, he said he felt great and did not feel any pain.

“I feel there’s no pain so far, I think because the dose is very small and the the needle is very small.”

“So I think I will encourage everyone to come for the injection, so not worried, not painful. Everyone should get the vaccination to protect ourselves and protect others.”

He added that as the state aims to complete vaccination by August 2021, six months ahead of the nation’s target of February 2022, everyone needs to be involved to achieve this target.

The private healthcare facilities including private hospitals and general practitioner (GP) clinics are well prepared and ready to be included as vaccination centres in Phase 2 and phase 3 of the vaccination programme, he said.

He pointed out that the most crucial aspect of the vaccination programme is public acceptance of Covid-19 vaccination as 70 per cent of the population need to be vaccinated to achieve herd immunity.

“As people below 18 years old are excluded for vaccination, we need a high participation rate to achieve the target. Currently, we have three vaccines approved by Ministry of Health (MOH) for use in Malaysia, Pfizer BioNTech, AstraZeneca and Sinovac vaccines. These vaccines have been proven safe and very effective, nearly 100 per cent, in preventing serious complications of Covid-19 Infection like pneumonia, admission to intensive care unit (ICU) and death.”

“The side effects of the vaccines are mostly minor. The most worrying side effects of severe allergy and anaphylaxis are extremely rare. Please be assured that effective measures are put in place at vaccination centres to treat these side effects if they do occur.”

“I urge everyone to come to have vaccination unless you have absolute contraindication. Please consult your doctor if in doubt.”