Covid-19: AstraZeneca vaccine option still open for Sarawak, says Khairy

PUTRAJAYA: The Federal Government remains open if Sarawak changes its mind on AstraZeneca (AZ) Covid-19 vaccine and decides to accept it, said Khairy Jamaluddin.

The coordinating minister for the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme said public confidence in AZ vaccines was high as shown when all 268,800 slots for AZ vaccine appointments were snapped up by Malaysians in just three hours.

"As we can see yesterday (May 2) the confidence towards AZ is good ... so it is up to the Sarawak government.

"If they decide to accept AZ, after seeing how it is well-received yesterday, I am open to it," said Khairy at a joint press conference with Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr Adham Baba here on Monday (May 3).

Previously, Sarawak Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) advisor Datuk Seri Dr Sim Kui Hian said the state would not use AZ vaccines.

Khairy earlier said the AZ opt-in programme would be extended to the rest of the country with a batch of 1.1 million doses of AZ vaccines from the Covax facility this month.

Concern about the AZ vaccine came about after extremely rare instances of blood clots among vaccine recipients in some countries.

The Special Committee on Ensuring Access to Covid-19 Vaccine Supply (JKJAV) has said the AZ vaccine is safe and its benefits far outweighs the risk it poses to recipients.

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