KUALA LUMPUR: A total of 44.8 million doses of Comirnaty (Pfizer) Covid-19 vaccines were administered in the country, says Dr Zaliha Mustafa.
The Health Minister said the doses were administered between Feb 24, 2021, and Dec 31 last year.
"The adverse events following immunisation (AEFI) reporting system under the National Pharmaceutical Regulatory Agency (NPRA) recorded a total of 20,153 reports which equates to 450 reports out of every one million doses.
"Based on documentation, a majority of reports or 94.2% received were non-serious and temporary in nature which did not threaten the health of vaccine recipients," she said in a written reply to Gobind Singh Deo (PH-Damansara) in the Dewan Rakyat on Monday (March 6).
She said only 26 reports of serious AEFI out of every million doses were recorded.
Dr Zaliha noted that those who suffered side effects would usually recover after a few days either with or without treatment.
However, she said those suffering prolonged side effects should seek treatment at a medical facility.
She added that her ministry had issued guidlines to identify and treat side effects such as myocarditis and anaphylaxis under the AEFI which are reported to the NPRA via its website or the MySejahtera application.
Myocarditis is an inflammation of the heart muscle which could weaken it while anaphylaxis is a severe, potentially life-threatening allergic reaction.
Dr Zaliha said the label on the vaccine packaging stated that the usual side effects of the vaccine were fever, soreness at the injection site, headaches, muscle soreness, fatigue and nausea, which dissipated after a few days.
She said the more serious side effects such as myocarditis and anaphylaxis rarely occurred.
She added that those suffering from serious side effects are entitled to apply for special financial assistance subject to approval.
Dr Zaliha said the ministry will continue to monitor the situation and provide the necessary updates and advisories to the public.