Pharmaniaga to offer Sinovac booster shots to public soon

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Pharmaniaga to offer Sinovac booster shots to public soon

Pharmaniaga Bhd has offered the Sinovac Covid-19 vaccine to the Health Ministry (MoH) as a booster shot.

Its group managing director Datuk Zulkarnain Md Eusope said the group is in the final stages of discussion to register the vaccine as a booster shot with the National Pharmaceutical Regulatory Agency, and it is expected to be approved very soon.

“Pharmaniaga has previously supplied more than 22 million doses to MoH and the private sector, thus there are about 11 million Sinovac vaccine recipients requiring the booster shot.

“The Sinovac booster shot has been approved for use in China, Turkey, Chile, Indonesia, and Cambodia.

“Six other countries are waiting for approval from their respective regulatory authority,” he said in a statement.

Zulkarnain was responding to Johor DAP leader Dr Boo Cheng Hau, who was yesterday reported as saying that at least 20% of Sinovac recipients reject Pfizer booster shots as they prefer the same vaccine for their third dose.

A recent real-world study in Chile and an immunogenicity test done in Turkey show that three doses of Sinovac is better than mixing with different vaccines as a booster.

Research results conducted at the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Peking University, and Sinovac Biotech Co Ltd show a third dose of Sinovac will boost immune response as early as seven days after the jab, with longer persistence of antibodies.

Sinovac Biotech oversea business senior director Weining Meng in a recent webinar organised by Pharmaniaga said a booster shot given at an interval of six to 12 months after the second dose would lead to a strong boost in immune response, with neutralising antibody titers increasing to approximately 20 times in adults and even higher in elderly folk aged above 60.

The booster shot is also highly effective in prevention against the deadly Delta variants.

Malaysia has approved off-label use of a heterologous Covid-19 third dose for Sinovac recipients aged above 60.

This will be part of a subgroup of the Real World Evaluation of Covid-19 Vaccination study on Covid-19 vaccine efficacy, led by the Institute for Clinical Research.

“We hope once NPRA approves the application, the government will give the green light for the vaccine to be administered as a booster shot for Sinovac recipients.

“The majority of Sinovac recipients received their second dose between June and September.

“As such, the requirement for a booster shot will start from December onwards and we have enough doses to cater for the needs of the nation,” Zulkarnain said, adding that the vaccine will be made available for the private market.

Currently, the vaccine has been approved by NPRA for adults, and adolescents aged 12 and above. TV

Pharmaniaga to offer Sinovac booster shots to public soon

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