SHAH ALAM, Nov 18 — Pharmaniaga Berhad (Pharmaniaga) will be supplying Sinovac COVID-19 booster dose to designated private hospitals and clinics soon, following the conditional approval by the Drug Control Authority (DCA) yesterday.
Pharmaniaga Group Managing Director Datuk Zulkarnain Md Eusope said the vaccine will be available at selected private hospitals and clinics as an option for individuals who wish to have the Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine booster dose for themselves.
“We hope with this effort, we can see our country revive it’s economy and help Malaysians weather the COVID-19 pandemic, thus ensuring the well-being of the people, business continuity and most importantly saving lives,” he said in a statement today.
Zulkarnain added that the Sinovac COVID-19 booster dose has been approved for individuals aged 18 years and above who have received the same type of vaccine (homologous) and will be administered three to six months after the second dose, as outlined by the COVID-19 Immunisation Task Force – Booster (CITF-B).
He noted that a number of Chinese provinces and cities have started giving COVID-19 vaccine boosters to people who received their first two shots at least six months ago.
“In China, the booster shot roll-out comes after close to 80 per cent of the population has been vaccinated, to give the optimum protection against the virus and new variants.
“According to a research in China, booster shot given at an interval of six to 12 months after the second dose led to a strong boost in immune response, with geometric mean titers (GMTs) increasing to approximately 140 in adults and even higher in the elderly aged above 60 years,” he said.
He said the GMT of six months after the third dose is higher than the peak of the second dose and added that the studies also showed higher persistence of antibodies of up to 20-fold, six months after the booster dose compared to the second dose, indicating a longer duration of protection from COVID-19 and new variants.
“Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine is safe as it is developed using inactivated virus which is a well-established technology of more than 40 years that is also being used commonly in many types of vaccines, currently available in the market including for polio, Hepatitis A and rabies,” he said.