KOTA KINABALU: Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Seri Hajiji Noor was among the first batch to receive the Covid-19 vaccine booster shot here.
This is part of the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme (PICK) which started in Sabah yesterday and is expected to go on until Nov 20.
Some 60,000 frontliners and 193,953 senior citizens as well as those in the high-risk group are eligible for the booster jab.
Hajiji said the programme will be carried out in two stages.
The first stage involves healthcare and non-healthcare frontliners from now until Nov 20.
Senior citizens aged 60 and above, as well as those with underlying comorbidities, will get their booster jabs beginning Nov 2, he said at the launch of the programme at the Sabah International Convention Centre here.
The booster dose is free under PICK and is dispensed to the recipients who volunteered for it.
This would involve those who have had their second dose at least six months prior.
For now, only the Cominarty vaccine produced by Pfizer-BioNTech has received conditional approval for the booster dose programme.
“Although receiving the booster dose is a choice for individuals, it is highly recommended that they take it to get optimum protection from Covid-19,” Hajiji said.
He said the booster dose is also for those found with waning immunity after six months of completing their vaccination.
The booster dose will be administered at selected government and private facilities under the supervision of ProtectHealth Corporation Sdn Bhd.
Eligible individuals will be notified through MySejahtera.
For those without the application, the vaccine administration centre (PPV) will be making the announcement via SMS or phone calls.
On another note, Hajiji urged the people not to throw caution to the wind following the lifting of the inter-district and interstate travel ban as well as the reopening of several economic sectors in Sabah.
“We must ensure that we fully comply with the SOP. We have to protect not only ourselves but also those around us, particularly our family,” he said.
Hajiji urged those who have yet to be vaccinated to do so by going to the nearest PPV, hospital or clinic, or outreach programme held near them.
“Please go and get the vaccine. We want to flatten the Covid-19 curve as much as possible,” he said.
As at Oct 18, 70.8% of adults aged 18 years and above in Sabah have been fully inoculated while 319,707 or 73.67% of the 434,000 teenagers above 12 have received one dose of the vaccine.
About 50.31% or 218,367 teenagers (aged 12 and above) in the state have been fully vaccinated as at Oct 18.
Hajiji said that 2,355,859 million people have received at least one dose of the Covid-19 vaccine while 2,140,780 million have completed their vaccination.
Earlier, he led state Cabinet ministers to their booster shots, marking the launch of the programme.