Covid-19 vaccinations may be compulsory once discovered, says MOH

Picture from The Star

By John Isaac

THE Ministry of Health (MOH) is considering making Covid-19 vaccination compulsory once it is found, said Health director-general Datuk Dr Noor Hisham.

However, he said the ministry would first have to conduct a study on the side effects and effectiveness of such a vaccine once it is discovered before making any decision on the matter.

“There is a study on it but the race to find the Covid-19 vaccine is still underway,” he said.

Dr Noor Hisham said MOH was also in the midst of conducting research on the immune response against the Covid-19 virus.

He said the ministry had detected there were some asymptomatic Covid-19 patients who had built up antibodies against the virus.

On the Phase Three trial of Covid-19 vaccine testing which will be conducted by the US-based biotech firm Moderna next month, Dr Noor Hisham said the development seems to be positive adding that though many other countries are also conducting studies and research,it would take a year before the vaccine could be marketed.

Meanwhile, he proposed that a collaboration between Asean countries be established as part of efforts to curb the spread of the Covid-19 outbreak.

“We look at the ranking of each country. We might consider allowing entry of those from nations that have been categorised as a green zone country.

“These are all the possibilities that we can consider on how we can improve our economic, social and educational activities…and (at the same time) we can control the disease,” he said in response to a question on the move to loosen border control once the Conditional Movement Control Order is lifted. – Bernama