Overcrowding due to misunderstanding over walk-in immunisation, says KL COVID-19 vaccination centre
KUALA LUMPUR: Large gathering of foreigners at a vaccination centre at Rumah Prihatin @ Grand Seasons on Wednesday (Aug 11) was because of a misunderstanding that it provided walk-in COVID-19 vaccination for non-Malaysians, said its management.
The management of the centre said that it only provided walk-in vaccination for Malaysians, with priority given to senior citizens, persons with disabilities, as well as marginalised and vulnerable groups.
Bernama reported that walk-in vaccination for foreigners was being carried out at the vaccination centre in Bukit Jalil and not at Rumah Prihatin @ Grand Seasons.
In a statement, the vaccination centre management said it had taken action to disperse the crowd but they refused to budge despite being given warnings.
However, the situation was eventually brought under control with the help of police and officers from the Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL), it added.
“The vaccination programme is managed by Rumah Prihatin under the MyMedik Vaccination Programme @ Wilayah and it did not involve other parties. We regret what happened and will further improve compliance with the standard operating procedures (SOPs) to ensure this incident does not recur,” said the statement.
A seven-minute and 15-second video had gone viral on social media since Wednesday, showing large crowds gathering in the compound of the centre with no physical distancing.
Many expressed fears that they might cause further outbreaks of infections in the country which is already struggling with rising daily COVID-19 cases. Malaysia reported yet another record high of 21,668 cases on Thursday.
Deputy Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob had urged the relevant authorities to take action on Wednesday.
In a post on his Instagram account, Mr Ismail Sabri said that he was shocked to see the video of the situation at the Rumah Prihatin @ Grand Seasons and Bukit Jalil vaccination centres, where the COVID-19 safe management SOPs have been disregarded.
"I hope the authorities can ensure situations where foreign workers are crammed like this will not occur again because it can cause an outbreak,” he said.
"I will contact the relevant ministries and the police so that this incident can be handled immediately.”
In a separate statement, Kuala Lumpur’s Dang Wangi district police chief ACP Noor Dellhan Yahaya said police took immediate action to control the situation at the vaccination centre after the video had gone viral.
“The compliance team managed to control the situation at the centre until the vaccination programme was completed," he said.
He also urged anyone with information on violation of SOPs to contact the Dang Wangi district police headquarters.