GEORGE TOWN: A total of 6,000 police personnel are among the 33,000 frontliners in Penang who will be receiving the Covid-19 vaccine, says Penang police chief Comm Datuk Sahabudin Abd Manan.
He added that policemen stationed at high-risk areas would be given priority to be vaccinated first.
“However, the specific number will be determined by the Health Ministry, and I don’t mind being the first, ” said Comm Sahabudin after a press conference on a drug bust at the state police contingent headquarters here yesterday.
Comm Sahabudin said the Covid-19 vaccines arrived at Penang Hospital on the island and Seberang Jaya Hospital on the mainland yesterday morning.
“We took the vaccines from the warehouse in Bayan Lepas at 8am and sent them to the respective hospitals where they will be stored there for the time being, ” he said.
“We are now awaiting the Health Ministry to give us the date before we transfer the vaccines to the designated vaccination centres, ” he added.
Penang health committee chairman Dr Norlela Ariffin said frontliners would receive the vaccinations at Penang Hospital, Seberang Jaya Hospital and district hospitals.
“Phase 2 of the vaccination programme will begin next month and the state had requested RM17mil in initial funding for about 22 centres to administer the vaccines.
“This is for staffing, physical set-up of the centres and logistics, although the money needed may be higher, ” she added.
Dr Norlela said it was still too early to discuss the logistical details of the second phase and it would be looked into carefully and fine-tuned at a later date.
She added that the second phase would involve 200,000 senior citizens in the state.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow has accepted the offer by state Health director Datuk Dr Asmayani Khalib to be the first candidate to receive the Covid-19 vaccine in Penang.
Dr Asmayani proposed it during a press conference at the Penang International Airport (PIA) after the arrival of the first shipment of the vaccines in the state.
A total of 16,000 doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine arrived at PIA at 5.35pm on Sunday on a special Cathay Pacific Cargo flight.
The plane took off from Hong Kong and transited in Singapore before arriving in Penang.
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