GEORGE TOWN (June 3): State governments and private hospitals can purchase Covid-19 vaccines other than those used in the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme (NIP), said Khairy Jamaluddin.
The NIP coordinating minister said these include those from China’s Sinopharm and Moderna in the US, but stressed that the vaccines must be among those approved by the World Health Organization (WHO).
“If the state wants to purchase their own vaccines and bring these other vaccines in, they can go ahead; we can even facilitate them,” he told a press conference after visiting the Covid-19 vaccination centre at SPICE Arena here.
He said the federal government is not blocking any state government from obtaining its own vaccines and denied that there was a monopoly on the supply of Covid-19 vaccines to Malaysia.
Khairy said state government and private hospitals interested in securing these vaccines need only to register them with the Health Ministry’s National Pharmaceutical Regulatory Agency (NPRA).
Registration with NPRA was not complicated but an easy procedure, he said.
“However, if the states want to obtain vaccines from the same suppliers as the federal government, such as for Sinovac and Pfizer, they will have to wait for the supplier to fulfil the federal government’s orders first,” he said.
He said orders for the federal government from the Sinovac and Pfizer suppliers must be prioritised.
“The suppliers must fulfil our orders first and once that is fulfilled, then they can supply to the states,” he said.
Similarly, private hospitals must also wait its turn if they plan to obtain the vaccines from the same suppliers as the federal government.
Other than Sinovac, Pfizer, and AstraZeneca, WHO has also approved Sinopharm, Serum Institute of India, Janssen, and Moderna vaccines for emergency use. — Malay Mail