‘Let non-govt clinics, hospitals join vaccine drive’

KUALA LUMPUR: Various parties have suggested to the government that private clinics and hospitals be given a role in the national vaccination plan.

They should be allowed to provide Covid-19 vaccinations to the public to expedite the vaccination process, said MCA Public Services and Complaints Department chief Datuk Seri Michael Chong.

“This can alleviate the government’s burden and ensure that more people are vaccinated.

“There are 9,000 private clinics and hospitals across the country.

“Many people don’t want to wait and they have the money to pay, ” he said.

If the government had concerns that private clinics and hospitals may profiteer from Covid-19 vaccines, Chong suggested that it set regulations and price tariffs.

“I appeal to Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr Adham Baba and Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Khairy Jamaluddin to please consider allowing private hospitals and clinics to vaccinate the public, ” he told reporters yesterday.Chong recounted his experience contracting Covid-19, which he described as a painful one.

He spent close to RM40,000 after being warded for about two weeks.

Chong also said the government’s target to vaccinate 70% of the country’s population by the first quarter of 2022 could affect the recovery of the economy.

The government, he said, should ensure that vaccines are quickly made available to the public so that travel could resume.

“So many businesses have closed shop because of the pandemic, ” he said.

Association of Private Hospitals Malaysia president Dr Kuljit Singh pointed out that the current government-only vaccination rollout plan is simply too long, as the wider population will only receive their vaccine under Phase 3 beginning May till next year.

“Private hospitals strongly feel that some assistance should be given to the government as the current programme to be implemented in three stages, which is expected to end in February 2022, is extremely long and not acceptable.

“This will include utilising the government-endorsed track and trace system to build a database on the provision of vaccination, ” he said in a statement yesterday.

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