KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 7 — The government should give priority to putting in place an indemnity system to help boost public confidence in the national COVID-19 immunisation programme, said Alliance for Safe Community chairman Tan Sri Lee Lam Thye.
He said the indemnity system could take the form of a Vaccine Injury Financial Assistance Programme.
“Such a system will further enhance public confidence in the safety of the vaccine, which is a necessary step to assuage those who have been influenced by negative reports in social media.
“It is also important to ensure transparency in the procurement of the drugs which must also be evidence-based… and to ensure that the maximum benefit accrues from the immunisation process, there must be systems put in place to ensure transparency and the avoidance of wastage,” he said in a statement today.
Lee said this is also where the National Pharmaceutical Regulatory Agency (NPRA) has a crucial role to play, whereby it must be independent and free to make the best decisions for the country and the people.
Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin has said that the government would begin to roll out the National COVID-19 Immunisation Programme at the end of this month, with 80 per cent of the country’s population, or approximately 26.5 million people, set to receive the vaccine free of charge.
The immunisation programme will be carried out in three phases, with the first involving some 500,000 medical and non-medical frontliners.