Vaccine white paper: 8.5 million vaccine doses expired in storage

KUALA LUMPUR: Close to 8.5 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines in the Health Ministry's inventory have expired while in storage.

The White Paper on Covid-19 Vaccine Procurement Management revealed that as at May 2, a total of 8,499,950 doses had expired, of which 3,487,730 doses were stored in ministry facilities and 5,012,220 in its storage facilities.

These comprised 2,339,109 doses of Vaxzevria vaccine by AstraZeneca, 3,240,350 doses of Convidecia by CanSino Biologics, 76,423 doses or CoronaVac by Sinovac and 2,753,440 doses of Pfizer Inc's Cominarty vaccine for adults as well as 90,628 doses of Cominarty version for children.

The document released in the Dewan Rakyat on Thursday (June 8) revealed that the disposal and records of inventory are conducted in accordance with the Asset and Store Management Guidelines.

"In an effort to curb the wastage of Covid-19 vaccines, the Health Ministry had offered the vaccines to other countries," read the paper.

"A total of 1,892,000 doses of vaccines of various brands were donated to countries such as Bangladesh, Myanmar, Laos as well as Bosnia and Herzegovina," it said.

It added that the Cabinet had agreed in principle to donate the vaccines to countries in need and the Health Ministry was tasked to manage its dispatch with other agencies.

A total of 72.80 million doses of vaccines were administered under the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme (PICK) while Malaysia had a vaccine portfolio of over 83 million doses.

Apart from the vaccines procured by Malaysia, the country also received 5.03 million doses contributed by countries such as Japan, United States, China, United Kingdom, United Arab Emirates and Singapore.

This comprised Pfizer's Comirnaty, Sinopharm, Sinovac's CoronaVac as well as the AstraZeneca vaccines.

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