Industrial vaccinations speeding up jab rate

Sarawak Housing and Real Estate Developers' Association (SHEDA) Chairman Datuk Sim Kiang Chiok. Photo: Ramidi Subari

KUCHING: The setting of industrial vaccination centres (PPVs) to vaccinate employees of various sectors will ensure that the economy will be able to operate when the government implements the Covid-19 exit plan, said Datuk Sim Kiang Chiok.

“The manpower of these sectors will be vaccinated and protected against Covid-19 infection and our country will be able to resume, recover and revitalise our economy onto the path of growth again,” said the Sarawak Housing and Real Estate Developers’ Association (Sheda) Kuching branch chairman.

He described the Covid-19 vaccine as a silver bullet to stop the virus, noting that the vaccination plan was being carried out according to phases which took into account the frontliners’ status, age groups and comorbidities.

“However, to speed up the vaccination rate, in Phase 3 the federal government has allowed industrial vaccinations to be rolled out by big industrial companies with a large number of employees,” he said when contacted today (June 26).

He said for this industrial vaccination phase, the vaccine was provided by the government for free but employers must cover the cost of providing industrial PPVs as well as fees to private medical personnel involved. Employees, he added, did not have to cover any cost.

“This is to allow the big industrial companies to assist the government to speed up the rollout of the vaccines. Of course, the success of the programme is also subjected to the arrival of the vaccines from the manufacturers,” said Sim. 

He also commended the recent announcement by Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg that Covid-19 vaccination plans would soon be rolled out for the plantation sector, adding that this would speed up the state’s vaccination rates to achieve herd immunity quickly. 

“In our state, health services are also doing a great job of administering over 60,000 doses per day and they have administered over one million doses of vaccines as at June 24,” he said.

At this rate, he said Sarawak would be able to reach its target of vaccinating 80 percent of the population in order to achieve herd immunity by August this year, with the promised supply of 380,000 doses per week from June by Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Khairy Jamaluddin.

In the meantime, until everyone is vaccinated and herd immunity is achieved, Sim urged the public to adhere to the standard operating procedures (SOPs).