KOTA KINABALU (Nov 11): Malaysia should expedite the procurement of vaccines in the process of being approved for use in other countries, said Sabah Nominated Assemblyman Datuk Yong Teck Lee.

Yong, who is also the Sabah Progressive Party president, called on the Federal government to make known of its plans looking at the recent developments on vaccines in the final stages of trials.

He said with the vaccines entering the third and final trials, other Asian countries like the Philippines and Indonesia have been fast tracking to get them thus Malaysia should get cracking as well.

“The Philippines aims to have coronavirus vaccine shots by next year to inoculate about a fourth of the population. Its government is evaluating 17 vaccines in various stages and is in talks to source the supply to initially vaccinate 25 million people out of their 100 million population.

“Malaysia should likewise get cracking now to evaluate various vaccines that are in the final stages of trials so as to prepare for mass vaccinations for its frontliners and citizens. It is important that these vaccines are provided free so that all our citizens will benefit,” he said in a statement here today.

Yong said the government should also come up with interim guidance in the order of priority for the vaccine recipients.

He said it is learnt that Pfizer and BioNTech had developed a vaccine which is more than 90% effective in providing protection against the COVID-19 virus and that doses of the vaccine are expected to roll out from December.

“This is good news and the government should immediately fast track to ensure that this vaccine can be obtained the soonest. China’s Sinopharm has also reported success in its COVID-19 vaccine pursuit,” he said.

Yong stressed that vaccine is the best long term solution to the COVID-19 pandemic, which would ultimately end the hardships and the economic crisis affecting nations and the people.

Source: https://www.theedgemarkets.com/article/malaysia-should-expedite-procurement-covid19-vaccines-%E2%80%94-yong