THIS week, we saw the Covid-19 numbers in five digits.
On Thursday, Malaysia hit an all-time high of 13,215 Covid-19 positive cases in a day.
The bad news was alarming. But there was also good news on that day.
Our vaccination rate hit a new high with 460,158 doses administered.
As of the latest information yesterday, a total number of doses administered in Malaysia is 13,621,884 – 9,317,144 individuals received their first dose, while 4,304,740 have been fully inoculated.
At least 28.5% of the population received the first dose and 13.2% got double doses.
In terms of the adult population, that’s 39.8% receiving the first dose and 18.4% double doses.
With more than 400,000 jabs a day, Malaysia has one of the fastest vaccination rates in the world.
In the past week, we were out-performed only by Canada among countries of a similar size or greater and double the pace of Australia.
Last Sunday, National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme coordinating minister Khairy Jamaluddin shared on his Instagram a screencap of vaccination rates collated by Oxford University’s Our World in Data.
Malaysia’s vaccination rate had exceeded that of many other countries, including the United Kingdom when they were at their peak.
The graph showed the rolling seven-day average of vaccine jabs administered per 100 people in the total population.
In a chart comparing the average doses administered in several nations and regions, including Europe, Asia, the United Kingdom, North America and the United States, Malaysia led in inoculation rates.
For example, on July 8, Malaysia administered 0.91 doses per 100 people in the population on average, compared to 0.38 in the United Kingdom, 0.67 in Europe, 0.49 in Asia, 0.33 in North America and 0.18 in the United States.
The positive impact of vaccination is beginning to be seen.
As Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin has pointed out, data shows that vaccination has succeeded in sharply reducing the number of serious Covid-19 cases among senior citizens and healthcare frontliners in the country.
On Friday and yesterday, more than 90% of Covid-19 cases reported were Category 1 and 2 patients who did not display any common symptoms or only showed mild ones.
In Labuan, where the Delta variant was first detected in the country, the number of Covid-19 cases and deaths also dropped after the government rushed vaccines to the island to increase vaccination.
This is why the Covid-19 Immunisation Task Force has embarked on an ambitious plan to vaccinate every adult in Kuala Lumpur and Selangor by Aug 1.
Codenamed Operation Surge Capacity, the mission will see over 6.1 million residents aged 18 and above in the two states having received at least one vaccine dose by that date. They are expected to complete their two doses of vaccination by the end of the month.
We now too must make the effort to be strong and stay resolute in this fight against Covid-19.
Ultimately, as Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah had urged, we need to, “trust the vaccine, trust the data. Vaccine saves lives and once fully vaccinated, we can live alongside with Covid-19”.