Making sure nursing home tenants, caregivers protected

GEORGE TOWN: Almost 2,000 people in nursing homes for the elderly in Penang have been vaccinated against Covid-19, according to the Covid-19 Vaccine Supply Access Guarantee Special Committee.

The committee said the northeast district Health Department’s mobile vaccination unit has already reached out to 54 care centres.

“The mobile vaccination unit has so far visited 54 elderly care centres where 1,330 senior citizens and 663 caregivers have been vaccinated.

“There are 80 centres in total and all of them are expected to be vaccinated by the end of this month, ” it said in a tweet yesterday.

Penang health committee chairman Dr Norlela Ariffin said mobile vaccination of the elderly had started on May 21.

“Vaccination for the elderly started at the northeast district as clusters were detected there.

“But eventually, the vaccination teams moved out to other districts, ” she said.

Penang welfare, caring society and environment committee chairman Phee Boon Poh urged the state Health Department to share its list of centres with the state government to ensure nobody was left out.

“There are over 200 centres in Penang and we do not wish anyone to be missed out.

“I hope we can have the list of centres and work together, ” he said.

It was earlier reported that there were 103 centres registered with the Social Welfare Department and 190 more were unregistered.

Penang Health Department director Datuk Dr Asmayani Khalib could not be reached for comment.

On May 14, two nursing homes within the same area in Lebuh Katz here were ordered to shut down after 36 residents and workers were infected with Covid-19.

Named the Lebuh Katz Cluster, the index case was a 68-year-old man who tested positive on May 10. All the 36 people in the cluster who tested positive have been sent to Hospital Penang.

On May 15, another cluster at a nursing home in Jalan Sultan Azlan Shah, Taman Century, was identified.

The index case was a 77-year-old man who tested positive on May 9 during a pre-surgery screening. A total of 19 people were screened and 12 tested positive.

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