Expert: Mass vaccination a preventive measure

PETALING JAYA: Mass vaccination for Covid-19 is only a preventive measure as it will not help to eradicate the virus, says Prof Datuk Dr M. Subramaniam.

The Malaysian Medical Association president said the most effective way was to adhere to the standard operating procedure (SOP) strictly to break the chain of transmission.

“Wash hands, wear mask and maintain physical distancing.

“The disease won’t go away if the people are complacent. Let us keep to the concept of Kita Jaga Kita,” he said when asked to comment on Malaysia’s plan to secure vaccine from China.

Dr Subramaniam said it was a known fact that viruses tended to mutate, so the efficacy of vaccines could come into question at some stage.

“For example, Rotary International is involved in helping eradicate polio. But the polio vaccine is not effective because the virus has mutated,” he said.

He noted that some companies were rushing to come up with vaccines.

“Under normal circumstances, it would take about two to three years for vaccines to be approved for use.

“Even as Covid-19 appears to be spreading, the vaccine manufacturers in United States are still at stage three of clinical trial,” he said.

Dr Subramaniam said companies in the world had yet to obtain a licence for Covid-19 vaccine.

“There are various stages in vaccine production such as exploratory, pre-clinical, clinical development, regulatory review and approval, manufacturing and quality control.“Then only the respective authorities will issue a licence with the approval of WHO (World Health Organisation),” he said.

Dr Subramaniam said Malaysians should combat Covid-19 together.

“Stop blaming the government.

“If we want to come out of this fast, follow the rules. Stay safe,” he said.

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