Sunday, May 16

MoH studying technical, clinical data before allowing fully-vaccinated individuals to travel

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PUTRAJAYA: The Health Ministry (MoH) is studying health-related technical and clinical data following a proposal to allow interstate travel for individuals who have completed the two doses of the Covid-19 vaccine.

Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr Adham Baba said the proposal to grant interstate crossings had been discussed at the National Security Council (MKN) level, with Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin himself raising the matter.

“I agree with the Prime Minister. Interstate travel upon completion of vaccination should be allowed as an incentive to encourage the public to get their Covid-19 vaccine shots,” he told reporters at the prize-giving ceremony for MoH’s ‘MyDebit’ campaign here yesterday.

On Thursday, Muhyiddin said individuals who had completed two doses of the Covid-19 vaccine might be allowed to travel interstate or even abroad in a proposal that would be soon decided at the MKN meeting.

Dr Adham said for now, interstate travel would only be allowed for individuals involved in the essential services sector as well as for tourism between states placed under the Recovery Movement Control Order (RMCO) – with a condition that tourists would use agencies and tour vehicles registered with the Tourism, Arts and Culture Ministry (Motac).

“Yes, there have been Covid-19 cases recorded from interstate crossings, but no clusters,” he said.

He also reminded those who had completed the vaccination process that they would still need to adhere to standard operating procedures (SOP).

“They (those fully-vaccinated) are not exempted from having to use face masks, practise good hygiene and observe physical distancing,” he said.

On the second phase of the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme set to kick off this April 17, Dr Adham said detailed preparations had been made at all 600 vaccination centres (PPVs) to ensure that the exercise would run smoothly.

“Registration for the vaccine needs to be intensified and this can be done through the MySejahtera application, hotline number or at health facilities,” he said.

Some 9.4 million recipients are targeted under the second phase, which would involve high-risk groups such as senior citizens, patients with chronic illnesses, persons with disabilities (PwD) and individuals with comorbidities.

“As of today (Friday), 498,468 individuals have received their first dose and in a few days, we will be achieving the 500,000 first dose completion mark,” said Dr Adham. — Bernama