PUTRAJAYA, March 29  — Private hospitals will be given permission to negotiate with suppliers to purchase COVID-19 vaccines, National COVID-19 Immunisation Programme Coordinating Minister Khairy Jamaluddin said today.

But being personally involved in discussions with vaccine providers, he said vaccine delivery to private markets will most likely be made in the third and fourth quarter of this year, earliest.

“So I will discuss with private hospitals about approval for them to initiate discussions.

“People who are wealthy should not think that they can pay for a shot this month or next month because the entire world is suffering from a lack of vaccine supply,” he told a media conference on developments on the National COVID-19 Immunisation Programme here.

“I will let them try to procure but to manage the expectations of Malaysians, I can tell you the private market will not immediately give them,” he added.

In addition, Khairy, who is also Science, Technology and Innovation Minister, said the public and private sectors will cooperate for the provision of COVID-19 vaccines to companies in specific industries that are operating in red zones and with more than 5,000 workers.

“This cooperation will be announced when we decide the form of cooperation with the industry players,” he said.

Meanwhile, Khairy said the Environment and Water Ministry has prepared a guidebook titled “Green Vaccination Programme” to help turn the operations at vaccination centres to be more environmentally-friendly.

“With the presence of more people at the centres and the consumption of resources on a large scale, including the handling of procured goods, the guidebook is an initiative towards sustainable resource management from the aspect of waste management and electricity use,” he added.


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