Govt to introduce walk-in for non-Malaysians in Penang soon, says Khairy

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Hundreds of migrant workers in Penang had gone to the walk-in vaccination centres for locals last Thursday, when the government started the programme. ― Picture by Choo Choy May
Hundreds of migrant workers in Penang had gone to the walk-in vaccination centres for locals last Thursday, when the government started the programme. ― Picture by Choo Choy May

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 11 — There will be walk-in Covid-19 vaccination centres in Penang just for non-citizens soon, Health Minister Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin said today.

He said these will be modelled after the dedicated centres for migrant workers that were set up recently in the Klang Valley, but did not specify a start date.

“This will be done to mop up all non-Malaysians in Penang who may have not received vaccination through Pikas or are reluctant to come out and get vaccinated,” he said referring to the Public-Private Partnership Covid-19 Industry Immunisation Programme.

Hundreds of migrant workers in Penang had gone to the walk-in vaccination centres for locals last Thursday, when the government started the programme.

Among them was the Pesta site in Sungai Nibong, which drew at least 100 foreigners at about 7am. Many of them were trying their luck as some were under the impression that the walk-in was open to all.

To prevent a recurrence, Khairy said the government will use multiple languages to communicate with the migrant communities to inform them about the start of their walk-in programme in Penang.

Large numbers of migrant workers thronged dedicated vaccination centres in the Klang Valley last month when the walk-in model was first rolled out.

Thousands turned up at the Bukit Jalil National Stadium vaccination centre on August 12, which was captured on camera and widely shared on social media, sparking fears of new clusters as those lining up breached the one-metre physical distance rules.

The Covid-19 Immunisation Task Force announced on August 19 that it will be abandoning the walk-in model, and instead will be giving vaccination appointments to the non-Malaysians through the MySejahtera app or through the National Immunisation Programme hotline or its website.

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