COVID-19 vaccinations have proven to be remarkably effective and safe in curbing the pandemic. Malaysia aims to attain herd immunity by vaccinating 80% of its population, or 26.7 million people out of a total population of 33 million in the country.
The first dosage was given to 2,002,345 while the second and third doses were given to 1,104,873 of them. This makes a total of 3,420,713 people have completed two doses of vaccine injections through the National Covid-19 Immunization Program (PICK) as of June 4.
However, our Indian community has been feeling a little jittery about registering themselves for vaccination. We understand why people are anxious about the hazards of vaccination, especially in light of recent reports of a significant but relatively rare side effect of blood clotting from two vaccinations.
Team Varnam managed to contact a nurse who wished to remain anonymous for us to gain some insights on why Indians are hesitant to get vaccinations.
“I must admit that I was nervous,” said the nurse who had received her both doses in the hospital. “A lot of my colleagues were. I thought I might collapse or have side effects. After all, it is something new. But I’m fine. There is nothing to worry about.”
As for our community, they are wary of the numerous rumored and genuine adverse effects. Fear is a well-known derailed of these immunisation programs. The vaccinations can indeed induce fever and discomfort, but these symptoms just indicate that the vaccination is responding. The vaccinations have arrived, but without willing arms to deliver the doses, they will be futile.
“I would like to encourage everyone to get themselves immunized, and it is also free of charge. Don’t be hesitant to sign up and get your immunizations. The government has only one goal which is to help the people.”
As a result, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has come out with a statement on the benefits of vaccines against COVID-19. The probability of major side effects from vaccination is substantially lower than the chance of serious significant morbidity and mortality from COVID-19. Hence, the World Health Organization strongly advises against COVID-19 vaccination, beginning with people in priority groups such as health workers, senior citizens, and people with underlying health conditions, who are more susceptible to infection and are at a higher risk of serious illness and death if infected.
Scientists across the world have collaborated at an unprecedented pace to discover and produce vaccinations. Those vaccines have been approved and undergone extensive testing to verify their safety, effectiveness, and quality. To assure this process, WHO collaborates with experts and national regulatory bodies in each country.
The National Pharmaceutical Regulatory Agency has approved three types of vaccinations which are Pfizer, AstraZeneca, and Sinovac to be used in Malaysia.
In the case of AstraZeneca, there have been reports of a serious, though extremely unusual, the side effect of blood coagulation. Somewhere around ten people out of every million people who have received the vaccination have experienced this ailment thus far. It’s safe to say that the benefits of vaccination greatly exceed the risks of these major side effects. Due to this reason, the World Health Organization continues to advocate COVID-19 vaccination particularly for priority groups like medical professionals, the elderly, and those with underlying health problems.
As the number of coronavirus deaths and serious cases involving children keeps rising, vaccination is the best way to protect yourself and help control the infection rate. This is why the World Health Organization urges people to get vaccinations without further ado.
Meanwhile, people who have been vaccinated or still awaiting their turn to be vaccinated should continue to practice public health precautions such as physical distancing, wearing a mask, hand and respiratory hygiene, and providing enough ventilation by opening windows and doors whenever feasible.
“Don’t wait! At one point, the nurse noticed that her previous hesitancy derived from her belief that “nothing awful can happen to me, right?”
Those who are keen to register for the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme can do so via the official website or MySejahtera Application. It’s not too late to register as there are three phases in the immunisation program:
Let us bear in mind that the vaccination will protect not only you but also your loved ones from the virus!