By Lian Cheng
KUCHING, June 23: Sarawak, which has been able to administer almost 60,000 vaccines per day, is making headway towards becoming the first State in Malaysia to achieve herd immunity with 80 per cent of the population vaccinated against Covid-19.
According to an infographic provided by Local Government and Housing Minister Dato Sri Dr Sim Kui Hian, Sarawak now holds a record that tops the nation — an impressively high daily vaccination rate of 59,256 on June 21.
Even for locations that have been known for high vaccination rate such as Kuala Lumpur and Selangor, the number of vaccinations per day has been below 40,000 so far.
The extraordinary vaccination rate recently shown by Sarawak has been due to a number of factors. According to State Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) chairman Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas, the recent multiple large shipments of vaccine supplies to Sarawak has been one of the main factors.
“Without the vaccines, it is impossible for us to expedite the vaccination process,” Uggah told DayakDaily.
Among other factors, the hybrid registration system which allows Sarawakians in urban areas to register with the MySejahtera app while those in rural or semi-urban areas are able to carry out registration manually has contributed to the high rate of vaccination.
Uggah, who is also Deputy Chief Minister said manual registration carried out with the ‘jab first, register later’ philosophy has proven to be extremely effective and successful in the rural and semi-urban areas where internet accessibility may pose a problem when it comes to registering for the vaccine via the MySejahtera app.
“To speed up vaccination in rural and semi-urban areas, we have also ordered as many as 650,000 doses of CanSino, which is a one-dose vaccine, specifically catered to rural folks who reside in the very interior of Sarawak,” said Uggah.
Uggah added that the setting up of PPV mobile (mobile vaccination centres) is another major factor that has contributed greatly to the high rate of vaccination in Sarawak.
He said at least 16 PPV mobile teams are moving in many parts of rural and semi-urban areas of Sarawak including Kapit, Betong, Sibu and other divisions.
“We are taking the proactive step of going to the ground to bring the vaccines to the people. Sarawak is large in area size and our population is scattered across the whole State.
“However, with the multipronged strategies, we believe we can achieve 80 per cent immunisation by August,” said Uggah.
The great effort of SDMC to step up vaccination roll out in Sarawak has resulted in the State leading other cities and locations in National Immunisation programme.
According to the statistics provided by Covid-19 immunisation Task Force (CITF), as of June 22, 2021, Sarawak ranks second in first dose dispensation and also second in complete dose administering.
As of June 22, 2021, 721,653 Sarawakians had received their first dose, constituting 25.6 per cent of its total population while a total of 188,852 Sarawakians had completed immunisation by receiving the second dose. — DayakDaily