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Monday, May 31, 2021

KJ: Fines for missing vaccination appointment only as last resort


Putrajaya will still try to persuade people to fulfil their vaccine appointments rather than pursue punitive measures.

Minister in charge of the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme Khairy Jamaluddin said the focus now was to remind people to turn up.

“For now, we will still be trying to contact and encourage them to show up for their appointment.

“Maybe (fining those who miss their appointment) is the last resort,” he said, in response to a question during a press conference today.

Yesterday, de facto Law Minister Takiyuddin Hassan said the government was “thinking about” handing fines to those who skip their vaccination appointments.

“The government is thinking about it because we don’t want wastage,” he told reporters in Kota Bharu, Kelantan, yesterday.

Takiyuddin said Putrajaya’s current policy on vaccination was that it has to be entirely voluntary.

Kelantan and Kedah have recently been hit by high rates of no-shows by those with vaccination appointments.

According to Health Minister Dr Adham Baba, the Covid-19 test positivity rate for Kelantan is the highest in the country - 11.48 percent - for the May 23 to May 29 period.

The rate was seven percent for Kedah during the same period.

Vaccination registrations for the two states have been below the 50 percent target.

Unfamiliarity with appointment notifications through the MySejahtera smartphone application among the elderly has been cited as a possible reason for this.

Malaysia is currently in Phase 1 and 2 of the Covid-19 vaccination programme, targeting frontliners, the elderly and the frail. - Mkini

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