IPOH: The state will conduct a study on whether it is viable to dispense the first dose of the Covid-19 vaccine via drive-through centres, says Mentri Besar Datuk Saarani Mohamad.
He said the process for first-timers was more complicated compared to those who were completing their second dose.
Speaking after visiting the drive-through centre at the Indera Mulia Stadium here, he said, for now, only those getting their second dose can get their jabs via drive-through or at the existing vaccination centre.
“As we can see, recipients will start from checkpoint A to B. We need to have more checkpoints for those getting their first dose as it involves a few processes.
“A suitable and larger location would also be needed, ” he added.
On whether the second drive-through location at the Sultan Azlan Shah Roundabout in Bandar Meru Raya would start soon, Saarani said it was still being evaluated.
“We do not want a long queue of cars to cause traffic congestion.
“We need suitable locations that are viable to set up the drive-through centre, ” he said, adding that the drive-through was meant to make it easier for senior folk, especially those with mobility issues, to get vaccinated.
“If it can attract more people to get vaccinated, we will expand it to other districts.
“There will be no more excuses of people having to park far away. The drive-through centre could increase the vaccination rate to up to 2, 500 people daily.
“It is also the next step for us in preparing for the next phase that includes people aged 60 and below, ” he said.
Meanwhile, Perak Health director Dr Ding Lay Ming said vaccines would be dispensed whenever the supplies arrived.
She said the vaccines would not be kept for long to ensure the people in the state would get them soonest.
“The message to the people is to take the vaccine when there is an opportunity as soon as they can. It does not matter which type.
“The people also must register and come (to get their vaccines), ” she added.
One of yesterday’s recipients, Raisul Amir Ahmad Shabuddin, said the drive-through vaccination was fast and efficient.
The 27-year-old said he got the jab together with his 57-year-old mother and 23-year-old sister.
“During our first jab, we waited for about three hours but just now they only checked our particulars and we can enter right away for our jabs, ” he said, adding that he and his family had signed up earlier with Tabung Haji to perform their haj.
“We were told that only those who had completed two doses can go.
“We were supposed to go last year but couldn’t due to the pandemic, so hopefully we can do so later in the future, ” Raisul Amir added.