Students seize chance to get inoculated

Mask of courage: Initially fearful of being vaccinated, Wan Nur Iriana made a splash by turning up in full costume at the PPV Spice Convention Centre in Bayan Baru, Penang. — ZHAFARAN NASIB/The Star

GEORGE TOWN: For someone fearful of the Covid-19 vaccine, Wan Nur Iriana Batrisya Wan Mohd Zaidi was relieved when she had to skip her appointment as she was unwell.

“I was down with fever last week, so my mother advised me to skip my appointment on Sept 28.

“I felt relieved that I did not get the jab then,” said the Form Three student.

But she finally relented and listened to the advice of others and turned up for the walk-in vaccination programme at the Setia SPICE Convention Centre on Tuesday.

“I was afraid to come but upon my mother’s advice, I agreed and braved myself.

“My brother also convinced me that there is nothing to worry about,” she said.

She literally made a dramatic entrance and turned up in a costume inspired by her favourite Spanish series Money Heist.

Wearing a Salvador Dali mask and red jumpsuit, the SMK Abdullah Munshi student was accompanied by her mother Roslilawati Rosli, 36.

Another student, Lim Jing Hoo, 13, said he decided to walk in to the vaccine dispensing centre (PPV) after being told by his teachers about it.

“I have registered through the MySejahtera app but did not receive any appointment date till now,” he said.

Jing Hoo was accompanied by his grandmother Ong Ley Chin, 54, who expressed relief that her grandson was finally getting his first dose of the vaccine.

Form Three student Ta Song Yu, 15, was also thankful that he got vaccinated on Tuesday.

“My brother received an appointment for vaccination but not me.

“Both of us are from the same school and registered on the same day.

“Our mother decided to bring both of us to the PPV and the personnel asked me to walk in to get inoculated.

“I feel lucky and thankful,” he added.

Setia SPICE Convention Centre PPV manager Dr Norhashimah Ismail said most of the walk-ins on Tuesday were youngsters aged between 12 and 15 who had either missed their date through MySejahtera or have not received their appointments.

“So far, the walk-ins went smoothly and parents have been cooperative in helping their children get vaccinated,” she said.

Starting yesterday, individuals who are eligible and have not obtained any vaccination appointment are allowed to walk in at all PPV in the state.

Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow had announced that this would include teenagers aged between 12 and 17.

“The 10 PPV in the state will operate as usual until the completion of the second doses,” he said on Tuesday.

He also noted that as of Oct 4, 65 intensive care unit beds had been provided at the Penang Hospital.

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