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Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow during a visit to the vaccination centre at the Gurney Paragon Mall in George Town August 17, 2021. — Picture by Sayuti Zainudin
Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow during a visit to the vaccination centre at the Gurney Paragon Mall in George Town August 17, 2021. — Picture by Sayuti Zainudin

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GEORGE TOWN, Aug 17 ― Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow gave an assurance today that the state’s Covid-19 vaccination will not be disrupted by political changes in Putrajaya.

He said the state Pakatan Harapan government will continue to cooperate with the related government agencies to ensure the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme (NIP) runs smoothly to meet its targets.

“As the Chief Secretary Tan Sri Mohd Zuki Ali stated clearly, the civil service will not be affected and that the civil service will continue to work under their respective ministries and committees,” he said after visiting the Retail Industry Covid-19 Vaccination Programme (Rivac) at Gurney Paragon Mall here.

He said the Covid-19 Immunisation Task Force (CITF) held a meeting this morning even though its minister resigned yesterday.

“This showed that the government departments continue to operate as usual and we hope the political changes will not affect the NIP,” he said.

Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin resigned as prime minister yesterday, along with his Perikatan Nasional Cabinet.

Chow said there will be two Rivac in Penang to vaccinate retail workers in the state.

The Rivac in Gurney Paragon Mall will be dispensing 6,000 first doses started yesterday and will complete in five days.

Chow said the other Rivac in Design Village in Batu Kawan will start tomorrow where 4,000 doses will be dispensed over five days until August 22.

On the shortage of vaccines which led to changes in appointment dates for some vaccine recipients, Chow said it was only a temporary issue.

“The state health department has reorganised and rescheduled the appointments so there will not be much impact due to the shortage,” he said.

He said a total 29,600 doses were dispensed yesterday compared to 30,000 to 32,000 doses normally.

He said this week the state received 160,000 doses of vaccines but it will be getting double that amount next week.

“We will be getting 320,000 doses next week so our challenge next week will be to arrange the dispensing of the vaccines at PPVs here,” he said.

He also clarified that the One Hope PPV in Juru will continue to administer first and second doses of vaccine as the state is getting more vaccine supplies next week.

“Tomorrow they will get 720 doses so that they can continue with dose two and also administer dose one,” he said.

He said the state health department has already rescheduled all changes in vaccine appointments over the next few days so the delay will be over in two days.

He said the state is still on track to achieve 100 per cent first dose vaccination by early September.

On the arrival of more vaccines next week, Chow said the vaccines will be dispensed at PPVs such as in University Sains Malaysia which can accommodate up to 1,000 a day and Spice Arena which can accommodate up to 5,000 a day.

As for vaccination for pregnant mothers, Chow said it was decided that they will be vaccinated when they go for their routine check-ups.

“We do not want them to queue up at PPVs so their vaccination will be arranged when they go for their routine check-ups,” he said.

As for the proposed walk-in vaccination for the disabled, Chow said they are still compiling a full list of the disabled in the state.

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