Alarming 1,600 children not vaccinated in 2016: Health Ministry


KUALA LUMPUR: Nearly 1,600 children did not receive their required vaccinations last year as compared to 1,500 in 2015, the Health Ministry (MOH) told the Dewan Rakyat yesterday.

Its deputy minister, Datuk Seri Dr Hilmi Yahya, said the children are from the states of Perak, Kedah, Pahang, Kelantan and Selangor.

"However, 95 per cent of children in this country have been vaccinated. (This figure) is considered high (by) World Health Organisation standards," he said.

Hilmi was replying to Datuk Kamarul Baharin Abbas (PKR-Teluk Kemang) who wanted to know what steps were being taken by the MOH to disseminate vaccine-related information to the public.

Hilmi said the ministry has implemented various initiatives to boost public confidence in the use of vaccines, including launching the 2016-2020 “immunisation promotion programme”, organising vaccination awareness campaigns, talks and workshops; and publishing articles on vaccination which were distributed to health clinics nationwide.

"(In addition, in 2013) the MOH, in collaboration with the Malaysian Paediatric Association, developed the ‘Immunise For Life’ website to promote immunisation (as a way of warding off) vaccine-preventable diseases," he said. -- BERNAMA