Weekly Highlights

Sinovac and AstraZeneca are not advised for pregnant women for the time being.

I refer to the recent announcement made by Minister Khairy Jamaluddin that current clinical guidelines state that both Sinovac and AstraZeneca are not advised for pregnant women for the time being.

While I welcome this clarification in view of the genuine fears and concerns shared by expectant and nursing mothers in relation to receiving Covid vaccination, the announcement came too late and caused great distress among mothers who have received their AstraZeneca vaccination (“AZ Mothers”).

The AstraZeneca voluntary program commenced on 5th May 2021, almost 2 weeks before the announcement made by Minister Khairy. The side effects to AZ Mothers and their babies remain unseen and this cannot be taken lightly.

The PN government must take all matters related to Covid-19 seriously

As such, I write this with great urgency calling upon the Government to immediately:

(a) extend the Covid-19 vaccine injury fund by the National Disaster Management Agency to cover these AZ Mothers (who have received their vaccination from the period between 5 – 17 May 2021) guaranteeing compensation ranging from RM50,000 – RM500,000 if they suffer side effects from being immunised. Similarly this should apply to any expectant or nursing mothers who have received the Sinovac vaccination prior to Minister Khairy’s announcement.

(b) provide medically safe follow-up measures in relation to their second dose without delay; and

(c) give clear instruction at all vaccination centres (PPVs) to ensure expectant and nursing mothers know the risks involved.

The Perikatan Nasional Government’s default mode of “do first, plan later” governance must be put to an end. They cannot treat vaccination announcements the same way they meddle with flip-flop SOPs.” -Hannah Yeoh

The stress of being infected with Covid-19 is excruciating for pregnant and nursing mothers, what more unimaginable the anxiety for having received an unsuitable vaccination. One life lost is one too many. This has to be a priority for the Ministry of Health today.

Hannah Yeoh

Member of Parliament for Segambut

Former Deputy Minister for Women, Family and Community Development

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