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Dr Sim said the state government should not wait for the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme to come up with a policy on vaccinating those under the age of 18. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa
Dr Sim said the state government should not wait for the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme to come up with a policy on vaccinating those under the age of 18. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

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KUCHING, Aug 11 ― The state government has asked the Sarawak Covid-19 Vaccination Advisory Group to evaluate whether those under 18 should also be inoculated against Covid-19, according to state Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) adviser Datuk Seri Dr Sim Kui Hian.

He said the state government should not wait for the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme (NIP) to come up with a policy on this particular group, as 260 out of 836 positive cases in Sarawak yesterday (31 per cent) involved those from this age group.

“As Sarawak has been vaccinated far ahead of the country, and about 29 per cent of our state’s population is younger than 18 years old,” Dr Sim said in a statement posted on his Facebook page last night.

He urged Sarawakians not to panic after recording the second-highest number of cases in the state and reminded them to remain cautious.

He said 114 cases, or 13.6 per cent, out of the 836 cases were unvaccinated individuals; 116 cases or 13.8 per cent were individuals who had received the first dose.

“This group will be less in Sarawak as we have almost 99.9 per cent follow up on the second dose,” he added, referring to those who have received their first Covid dose.

Dr Sim, who is also the state local government and housing minister, said 346 of the 836 cases involved individuals having received full vaccination.

“We need to analyse further how many of them were infected after 14 days,” he said.

He also noted that 645, or 77 per cent, of the total cases reported yesterday originated from Kuching, Samarahan and Serian districts.

He said this could be due to high population density, mobility and networking.

“The good news is very few of the cases are in the high-risk categories of three, four and five,” he added.

Dr Sim said the localities in Kuching district with more than three cases yesterday were

 Kampung Bintawa Ulu (143), Kampung Bunuk (69),  Punau cluster (50), Kampung Bintawa Tengah (28), Kampung Telaga Air (6), Lorong Cahaya Damai (5), Jalan Foochow (5), Kuching Family Park (4) and three each from Kampung Tupong Ulu, Kampung Semariang Batu, Kampung Sebuak, Kampung Bintawa Hilir, Kampung Semarang, Taman Stapok  and Xin Siang Demak Laut Commercial Centre.

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