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By Ling Hui
KUCHING, Nov 27: The recently viral list of over 50 private clinics and hospitals in Sarawak alleged to be open for Sinovac booster shot administration is verified as fake news.
Minister for Local Government and Housing Dato Sri Dr Sim Kui Hian said he had consulted the Ministry of Health (KKM) regarding the list and the authorities affirmed the circulating information was untrue.
“I have already asked KKM yesterday and they said the list of private clinics or hospitals to give out Sinovac booster shots (in Sarawak) has not been confirmed.
“So, don’t get too excited,” he urged the public, noting that the Sarawak Health Department (JKNS) will be announcing the details of Sinovac booster dose administration by next week.
He further explained that arrangements need to be made with local medical premises concerning vaccine supply and its storage, thus the process will require time.
Dr Sim, who is also a cardiologist, said private clinics that have been administering Pfizer booster doses are less likely to be selected to distribute Sinovac booster shots as well due to differences in vaccine storage requirements.
“Pfizer vaccines need to be kept at below 70 degrees Celsius while Sinovac vaccines can be kept in normal refrigerators.
“Besides, one bottle of Sinovac is for two persons while that of Pfizer is for six persons. So because of these (differences), arrangements with the private clinics need to be made,” he said during the ShallWEETalk Facebook live streaming session today.
Meanwhile, Kuching South City Council (MBKS) mayor Dato Wee Hong Seng who is also the host of the live session, urged the public not to share unverified news which could cause confusion.
Always refer to information from official channels, he stressed.
On Nov 17, Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah had announced the approval by the Drug Control Authority (DCA) to use Sinovac and AstraZeneca vaccines as booster shots, with eligibility open for those aged 18 years old and above who have previously received the same vaccines. — DayakDaily