Covid-19: Vaccination passport may be introduced for travel after more M'sians inoculated, says Health DG

PETALING JAYA: Once more Malaysians are fully immunised, a form of "Covid-19 vaccination passport” may be introduced by the government as a requirement for interstate, inter-district and international travel, says Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah.

Dr Noor Hisham was optimistic about the rate of vaccination in the country, as he said herd immunity may be achieved as soon as the end of the year if daily vaccination figures can be stepped up.

“Give it two or three more months and increase the rate of vaccination. Maybe in November or December, we can achieve herd immunity.

“This has not been implemented but it is being considered. There must be SOPs for going to mosques and vaccine passport for travel,” he said during a webinar on Islam and current affairs organised by Pertubuhan Intelektual Negara and Persatuan Ulama Malaysia on Saturday (June 19) night.

“When more people are vaccinated, we will use vaccination as a pre-condition to travel across states, districts and internationally,” he added.

Dr Noor Hisham said it is still too early to implement the vaccination passport system, as many Malaysians aren’t vaccinated yet.

“Not even 10% of the population have received both doses. So we must widen (this immunisation) programme as soon as possible," he added.

Earlier on the webinar, Dr Noor Hisham said the current vaccination rate is at 250, 000 doses a day and the aim is to increase it to 300, 000 soon.

“We will step up vaccination in August. If we can achieve herd immunity faster, then we can break the chain of Covid-19 infections.”

He also said that once herd immunity is achieved, SOPs can be relaxed, such as wearing masks, practising social distancing, among others.

“As long as we have not achieved herd immunity, we must abide by public health instructions and increase the rate of vaccination.”

As of Saturday (June 19), Malaysia administered a total of 164, 282 Covid-19 vaccines.

The Special Committee on Covid-19 Vaccine Supply Access Guarantee (JKJAVMY) in a tweet on Sunday (June 30) said that 128, 400 people had received their first dose on Saturday while 35, 882 had completed both doses.

The total number of vaccination jabs given in the country stood at 5.675, 002 with 4, 086, 087 or 12.5% of those eligible receiving their first dose.

The number of those who have completed both doses is 1, 588, 915.

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