PETALING JAYA: Face-to-face briefings about the vaccination process must be quickly held at private aged care homes, says the Association for Residential Aged Care Operators (Agecope).
With concerns among the elderly surrounding the vaccines, Agecope president Delren Terrence Douglas said it was vital that such doubts be addressed. This is especially urgent as the second phase of the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme is due to kick off next week.
“The Health Ministry has already provided care home operators with an online form where we can provide a list of residents, their details, comorbidities, and whether they agree to be vaccinated.
“However, residents will only be vaccinated if they decide to after they are briefed, ” he said.
Speaking of the importance of face-to-face briefings, he said a recent brief held at an aged care home in Melaka had been successful in allaying fears.
“Health Ministry officials came to brief the residents, caregivers, and the family members of the residents. “Residents who initially declined to be vaccinated eventually agreed, ” he said.
Delren, who represents over 200 care home operators in the country, said many of them had not yet heard from the authorities about when their briefings would be held.
“The authorities are supposed to conduct a briefing one or two weeks before vaccination, as the information on the online form may be outdated due to residents passing away or new residents arriving, ” he said. He added that the closing date for operators to submit their online forms was March 15, which he said many operators were unaware of.
“So now operators would have to get family members of the residents to register their details instead.
“For me, there shouldn’t be a cut-off date as this may not be the most efficient way, ” he said.