Malaysia will stop administering China’s Sinovac once its supplies end.
Health Minister Datuk Seri Adham Baba in a news conference today said, Kelantan will stop administering Sinovac by month-end, while other states will follow suit.
“…it started in Kelantan and soon other states will follow.”
“About half of the 16 million have already been distributed, so the rest will be used to cover second doses.”
He explained, moving forward, the country’s inoculation drive will be largely anchored by the Pfizer-BioNTech.
“For Pfizer, we have ordered a total of around 45 million doses while for Sinovac we ordered only around 16 million doses.”
“For those who have yet to be vaccinated, they will receive the Pfizer vaccine.”
The announcement to stop using Sinovac’s inactivated virus vaccine comes amid increasing concerns over its efficacy against new and more contagious variants of the coronavirus.
Neighbouring Thailand this week said it would use the AstraZeneca vaccine as a second dose for those who received the Sinovac shot, while Indonesia is considering a booster shot for those who received the two-dose Sinovac course.
Other vaccines approved in Malaysia include those of AstraZeneca, China’s CanSino Biologic and the Janssen vaccine of Johnson & Johnson.
Malaysia also plans on Friday to announce its decision on whether to add the vaccine of China’s Sinopharm.
With 880,782 cases and 6,613 deaths so far, Malaysia has one of Southeast Asia’s highest per-capita infection rates.
For the record, Adham is synonymous to “warm water”, “500 countries” and “Spanish Fly” due to multiple gaffes during his tenure as Health Minister.