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Tuesday, March 30, 2021

Our Covid Vaccination Program Going Sideways?

 Here is some strange news :



  • Bernama: Private hospitals to purchase Covid-19 vaccines, says Khairy 
  • vaccine delivery to private markets most likely in 3rd / 4th qtr
  • I will discuss with private hospitals about approval for them to initiate discussions
  • wealthy people should not think they can get a shot this month or next month 
  • entire world is suffering from a lack of vaccines
  • I will let them try to procure it 
  • Bernama

My comments :

Obviously the government will not be able to get enough of the vaccines in the quantities that we need and in quick enough time.

If about 500,000 people have been vaccinated in the past two months (a doctor told me this)  that will add up to only THREE MILLION vaccinated people per year. 

We have 32 million people !!

In the USA and UK the Army (which is expert at logistics) has been roped in to set up army tents in open air car parks at stadiums and shopping malls for "drive through"  vaccinations.

In Nevada, USA one such drive through set up by the US Army National Guard can handle 90,000 vaccinations a day. The Americans have already vaccinated over 93 MILLION people in just a few months.

  • 51,593,564  full vaccinations
  • 93,631,163  first vaccinations
  • 143,462,691 total doses

Here is a 49 second video showing the US National Guard vaccinating people in New Hampshire which is a state in the US. Notice that the Army medical corps is administering the vaccine. You can see that injecting people requires no rocket science and each vaccinations takes less than one minute.

 



We also have an Army, our Army also has tents and plenty of personnel who are expert at setting up army tents, supply dumps, logistics centers etc.  We also have a Ministry of Health, we have plenty of nurses and medical personnel and we have the vaccines. 

We also have plenty of open air car parks, stadium car parks, shopping complex car parks, empty shopping complexes, empty hotels with large empty lobbies etc which can all be used as vaccination centers.

Dato Ameer Ali Mydin has volunteered all his Mydin supermarket lobbies to be used as vaccination centers (free of charge Dato, syabas).

So why cant we just put all these resources together and vaccinate our people? Apa susah sangat? 

Now the Minister says private hospitals can negotiate with Covid 19 vaccine suppliers on their own. To me this is represents a failure of the Minister to manage the supplies. 

Granted there is a shortage of the vaccines around the world but the production volumes are being ramped up by the day. 

Mark my words, soon there is going to be an oversupply of the vaccine. 

The Americans for example will have vaccinated ALL their 300 million + people by June 2021.

"Covid-19 Vaccine Will Be Available To Every American By End Of May, Biden Says"

So that is potentially 300 million doses available in the second half of this year.

Russia has just begun production of their third Covid vaccine CoviVac.



"Apart from the new vaccine, Russia also plans to produce over 88 million doses of anti-coronavirus medications by June 2021, including 83 million doses of Sputnik V and 5.4 million doses of EpiVacCorona".

So believe me folks there are going to be large volumes of vaccines available soon.

We have to be clever in how we negotiate and secure the supplies at the market price. And we need honesty. 

Tolonglah no more giving supply contracts to the chosen few, the orang kaya and the usual crap. This is a time of national emergency. This is not the time to make money to line the pockets of the rich and powerful.

Other news says :

Malaysia has so far gained access to Covid-19 vaccine supplies through the Covax facility, and initial purchases from five Covid-19 vaccine manufacturers which include two-dose vaccines from Pfizer-BioNTech, AstraZeneca, Sinovac Life Sciences Co Ltd (Sinovac) and CanSinoBIO, and single-dose vaccine Sputnik V, from Russia. Bernama

Well if you go to the Covax page on Wikipedia (click here) you will see that Malaysia has received 1.6 million doses so far. 

Since we are a Self Funding Participant (SFP) in Covax there should be no restrictions for Malaysia to source vaccines outside of Covax.   Russia, India, Israel plus other countries are producing vaccines. Almost the entire output of the Oxford-Astro Zeneca vaccines are Made in India by the Indian Serum Institute.

There are two main bottle necks in this vaccine thing :

No. 1 is getting the source from outside the country. I agree this is beyond our control. It is not easy. That is why we have to be clever and quick about it. And we have to be honest. Do not screw things up and make things worse by giving exclusive import licenses,  monopoly rights etc to the few and the chosen to import these vaccines.

Ok please allow the private hospitals to import the vaccines on their own but allow them to import the vaccines from any approved and reliable supplier anywhere in the world.  Jangan pula letak syarat yang bukan-bukan.

It would defeat the purpose if the government only allows the private hospitals to import the vaccines from the same group of manufacturers (as Covax for example) or they can import them only through the same group of local 'importers'.  

Because the Minister made this weird statement :

  • wealthy people should not think they can get a shot this month or next month 

Why even bother mentioning "wealthy people"? Is there some agenda to profit from "wealthy people" ?

My concern is this, if only a few companies are given permits to import the vaccines and then they are the same ones selling to the government hospitals as well as to the private hospitals, then for a certainty the vaccine importers will prefer to sell at a higher price to the "wealthy" patients waiting in the private hospitals.  There will be less doses available for the government hospitals.  

Here is a question for the Minister - what is your guarantee that this will not happen?

No. 2 is getting the people vaccinated once the vaccines have arrived here. This part of the equation is fully under our Malaysian control. This is where we need to speed things up much more.

Covax says Malaysia has received 1.64 million doses of their vaccines. We have so far vaccinated about 500,000 people (mostly first dose). So (ballpark) there are about a million doses left from Covax alone.  And most certainly more vaccines are on the way.

We just need to speed up the vaccination process. This is a national Emergency. We have all the resources available locally - people, logistics, locations, volunteers etc etc.

We really need to speed things up.

The views expressed are those of the writer and do not necessarily reflect those of MMKtT.

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