Malaysia committed to making vaccinations compulsory: Health minister

Malaysia committed to making vaccinations compulsory: Health minister

A nurse vaccinates a patient as part of the start of the seasonal influenza vaccination campaign in
Malaysia's Ministry of Health will start implementing the policy of compulsory vaccination. (Photo: Reuters/Eric Gaillard)

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia's health ministry is committed to making vaccinations compulsory despite the challenges it faces in making coverage mandatory. 

It is the ministry's responsibility to ensure that target groups are enlightened on the importance of vaccinations, health minister Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad said on Monday (Feb 25).

"Whatever it is, we will start (implementing the policy of compulsory vaccination), he said.

He added that what is most important is that parents understand that the safety and health of their children are paramount and know the risk if their children are not vaccinated.

"The anti-vaccine group has only been exposed to the negativities and not information based on facts. Thus, all parties, not just those at the ministry but also at Jakim (Malaysia Islamic Development Department), and many of the muftis have given positive views on vaccination.”

Dr Dzulkefly's comments come after a two-year-old boy - who is believed to have had diphtheria -  died in Johor Bahru on Feb 21. The boy had never been immunised. 

Five children - who are believed to have been in contact with the boy - were quarantined in Johor on Sunday after they tested positive for diphtheria.

Source: Bernama/aa(aj)

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