KUALA LUMPUR, 20 Feb  — Having staff and inmates of elderly nursing homes vaccinated, is important in preventing or reducing risk of COVID-19 infection in the country, said Deputy Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation (MOSTI) Datuk Ahmad Amzad Hashim.

He said the spread of virus infection in these nursing homes could occur very quickly and it would be difficult to curb transmission if there is slow action.

“This is because of the closed environment and there is difficulty in maintaining physical distance. In addition there is the problem of movement of staff from one health or nursing premises to another. 

“If there is a virus outbreak, it would be a burden to the operators of these institutions as they lack the resources.

“Health and safety personnel fighting against the virus will not be able to cope when they are constantly flooded with new cases and clusters,” he said when officiating the National Forum on Vaccination Plan held virtually for staff and residents of nursing homes today.

Ahmad Amzad said staff and residents of elderly care nursing homes need to continue with their routine even when positive cases have been detected in the premises.

“Since the pandemic hit, the elderly aged 60 years and above account for 70 per cent of total fatalities recorded,” he said.

As such he said, the government welcomes the cooperation of stakeholders in making staff and residents of these homes aware of the importance of getting them immunised.

Malaysia is set to start the National COVID-19 Immunisation Programme on Feb 26 and 80 per cent of the population or 26 million individuals have been targeted to receive the vaccine for free through three phases from April 2021 to February 2022.


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