As the saying goes, “attack is the best form of defence”, and the Malaysian government are rightly set on their target to vaccinate the population as quickly as possible with an aggressive plan to expand the National COVID-19 Immunisation Program (PICK).
So far, as of the time of writing, a total of 1.861 million people residing within our borders have been given their first dose with just over 1 million having received their 2nd dose. To speed this process up, a drive-through vaccination system will be rolled out to the public, among other initiatives.
This offensive posture adopted by the COVID-19 Immunisation Task Force will run in parallel with the more reactive (or defensive) moves made to respond to the rapidly rising new infections reported daily as we begin the ‘full lockdown’ starting on June 1st.
As was previously reported, PICK coordinating minister Khairy Jamaluddin revealed their target to be approximately 150,000 doses administered per day once larger shipments of the vaccine start arriving in June.
Much about this drive-through vaccination program has not been clarified, but it follows a successful pilot project conducted at University Sains Malaysia in Kubang Kerian, Kelantan. Presumably, it will be a larger and more complex version of that operation, possibly also taking advantage of larger university campuses due to their ample space to accommodate a long queue of vehicles.
Apart from this, in addition to the most recent one in MITEC, Khairy said that even more large scale ‘mega PPVs’ will be established within the Klang Valley area in addition to The Mines, Setia City Convention Centre, Puncak Alam UiTM, Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre, and Stadium Negara Bukit Jalil with more on the way in other states such as Penang and Johor.
Meanwhile, in Indonesia, a drive-through vaccination service focusing on senior citizens and the elderly has been in operation since early March and will be in place until the end of 2021. Rather than relying entirely on the government, they have collaborated with digital healthcare consultation provider Halodoc and ride-hailing company Gojek, and it remains free of charge.
Through leveraging the commercial sector, the drive-through system is less prone to inefficiency and can guarantee a more widespread and mobile network of vaccination locations, ensuring the elderly will not have to endure long waiting queues or be taken far from their home/workplace. That said, the service is limited to the greater Jakarta area but has also started on the holiday island of Bali.