Ministry to consider making certain vaccinations compulsory

KUALA LUMPUR: The Health Ministry is prepared to consider a proposal of the Mal­aysian Paediatric Association to make at least two of the 12 vaccines under the Nat­ional Immunisation Programme compulsory.

Its minister Datuk Seri Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad said the proposal requiring vaccination with MMR vaccine for measles, mumps and rubella as well as diphtheria vaccine will be finalised soon.

“The proposal we obtained will take into consideration making one or two vaccines compulsory, in which we could prevent six to seven types of diseases,” he told the media after opening the 2019 Malaysia Health Conference at Hotel Istana yesterday.

He said the ministry had mobilised a task force to study all proposals in an effort to make immunisation compulsory for all children in the country.

Dzulkefly said the task force showed high commitment towards ensuring that the health interest of children was protected and that fatalities involving unvaccinated children would not recur.

He also rejected allegations that some private medical practitioners were unhappy with the payment rate under the Peduli Kesihatan B40 (PeKa B40) health screening programme because they deemed the rate too low.

He said roadshows and town hall sessions conducted by the ministry showed that 95% of the medical practitioners said they had no problems with the payment rate.

“We see no problem as the commitment of medical practitioners is very good and they are aware that we are forced to place hopes on them as our facilities and capacities are overstretched,” Dzulkefly said.

The ministry had created the PeKa B40 programme to reduce non-communicable diseases involving 800,000 people in the B40 group aged above 50.

Under the scheme, patients only need to pay RM40 for their first visit to the clinic and private laboratory and RM20 for subsequent visits. — Bernama

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