Life slowly returning to normal for two Malaysian scholars in UK


All for vaccination: Ooi and Dr Fatimah Rayeesah.

PETALING JAYA: Two Malaysian scholars in the United Kingdom believe their lives will soon have some semblance of normalcy now that they have been vaccinated against Covid-19.

Liyann Ooi said normal life was slowing returning in the UK as shops were open and people could dine in at restaurants.

“More people are out and about after more than a year of the crippling pandemic.

“I also see more people returning for their follow-ups or treatments for various physical and mental health conditions, ” said the Chevening scholar, who also volunteers with the NHS at its Covid-19 vaccination sites.

The 28-year-old from Shah Alam said getting the vaccine was “a powerful step in taking charge of your health.”

Ooi, who is studying for her master’s in Health Psychology at University College London, said even those who were relatively young and fit could not be sure they would not fall seriously ill or suffer from long-term Covid-related problems.

“By being vaccinated, we’re helping to protect each other – our loved ones and people in our community, particularly those who may be vulnerable to the effects of the disease.

“The sooner we can all get back to the activities we used to enjoy, the better it will be for our local and global economies, ” said Ooi, adding that her family in Malaysia have received their first dose of the vaccine.

Like Ooi, Dr Fatimah Rayeesah Liyaqat Ali, 31, has also received both doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine.

The medical doctor from Petaling Jaya, who is also a Chevening scholar, said she chose to get the vaccine as she is at risk of a severe infection due to her underlying rheumatoid arthritis.

“I wanted to be able to travel back home if the need arises, ” said Dr Fatimah Rayeesah, who is currently in the UK pursuing her master’s in Applied Human Nutrition at Oxford Brookes University.

She also said her parents back home have registered for their vaccination.

“It is better for my parents to have the vaccine than to face the possibility of a severe infection, ” she said.

The Chevening award is the British government’s global scholarship programme offered by its Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

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