The vaccine has been administered to the younger population in China and there has been no record of any safety risk
by SYAHMIE FAYYADH JAAFAR / Pic by BLOOMBERG
THE Sinovac Covid-19 vaccine which has been approved for use in children and adolescents will be made available at selected private hospitals and clinics very soon.
Pharmaniaga Bhd Group MD Datuk Zulkarnain Md Eusope said 63 million doses of the vaccine have been administered to the younger population (12-17 years old) in China and, to date, there has been no record of any safety risk reported by the Adverse Events Following Immunisation (AEFI).
According to AEFI, only nausea and dizziness were reported, which are very mild in nature.
Zulkarnain said Pharmaniaga acknowledges the parents’ concerns on the effectiveness and the side effects of the vaccine.
“We assure you that based on the data of more than 63 million doses administered in China, it is proven to be effective in protecting children and adolescents from the virus,” he said in a recent statement.
He further explained that the vaccine uses inactive viruses that are safe and is a well-established method in other vaccines such as polio, Hepatitis A and rabies.
Zulkarnain hoped that this effort would normalise the educational sector, especially for secondary school students.
“With China moving to vaccinate children of 3 to 11 years of age, we will apply for these ages once enough safety data are made available to allow normalisation of the pre-and primary school sectors,” he said.
On Oct 1, Health DG Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said the Health Ministry has approved the use of the Sinovac Covid-19 vaccine for teenagers aged 12 and above.
The decision was made during a Drug Control Authority meeting.
This is the second vaccine to be approved for teenagers after the Pfizer vaccine.