KUCHING: Sarawak may have one of the lowest R-naught (R0) or infectivity rates in the country, but there is no room for public complacency as the rate has steadily increased from 0.71 per cent on Dec 28 last year to 0.89 per cent on Jan 9.
The advice came from Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Seri Dr Sim Kui Hian in a Facebook post yesterday (Jan 13), where he advised the people to take their booster shots.
“With the Omicron surge already in West Malaysia and Sabah, please get your booster before the Omicron surge in Sarawak soon,” he said.
He said that from October last year to January, 1,814,752 adults in Sarawak were eligible for the booster dose but only 74.2 per cent had come forward, with 468,904 yet to receive their booster dose.
“Only 59.3 per cent of eligible adults aged 18 to 29 years have received their booster dose,” said Dr Sim, who is also Public Health, Housing and Local Government Minister and SDMC advisor.
He said there was no excuse not to receive the booster as various vaccination combinations were available now, such as triple Sinovac, triple Pfizer-BioNTech, Sinovac/Sinovac/Pfizer-BioNTech, and AstraZeneca/AstraZeneca/Pfizer-BioNTech.
“Looking forward to Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin and the Health Ministry (MoH) updates on the implementation of vaccination for five- to 11-year-olds,” he said, adding that there were 272,500 eligible children in Sarawak.
Dr Sim said because the people had played their part, Sarawak had among the lowest number of COVID-19 related deaths in the country apart from Labuan and Putrajaya and among the highest vaccination numbers nationwide.
He said 91.7 per cent of eligible adults and 87.9 per cent of eligible adolescents in Sarawak had been fully vaccinated with two doses.
Sarawak had also administered booster doses to about 70 per cent of its eligible adult population, whereas in Malaysia as a whole, only 37.3 per cent of eligible adults had received the booster dose, with Melaka at 50.3 per cent, Klang Valley (42.3 per cent) and Sabah (15 per cent).
“Thank you very much to the people of Sarawak coming together in the spirit of solidarity in our war against COVID-19,” said Dr Sim.
Earlier, in his FB posting, he announced the resumption of the familiar Sarawak Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) Zoom meetings chaired by Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas.