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Decision to halt involvement of GPs in PICK only temporary

KUALA LUMPUR (Aug 27): The decision to halt the involvement of private general practitioners in the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme (PICK) in the Klang Valley is only temporary.

Health Ministry (MOH) and Science, Technology and Innovation Ministry (MOSTI) in a joint statement yesterday said the decision was made after studying various factors such as the capacity of the vaccination centres (PPV), the number of vaccines and the supplies, as well as the number of people who still need to be vaccinated.

It said this was in line with the implementation of PICK, which is to ensure that vaccination rates are high and done as swiftly as possible.

The vaccination rates will then gradually decrease as more people receive the Covid-19 vaccine shots, the statement read.

It was reported that more than 700 private clinics were stopped from administering Covid-19 vaccines under PICK.

The statement said that the involvement of GPs which began in May had contributed to the success of the recent Capacity Surge Operation, which saw most Klang Valley residents being vaccinated.

“To date, 1,688 out of about 7,000 GPs nationwide had taken part in PICK. As of Aug 24, out of 32,212,527 doses administered nationwide under PICK, a total of 1,087,813 doses have been dispensed by GPs.

"This constitutes 3.4% of the total vaccines administered under PICK. Apart from GPs, 471 other organisations comprising private hospitals, private venues, and industries were also involved in PICK," the ministries said.

There are various types of PPVs involving private medical practitioners, namely General Practitioner PPV, Specialist Clinic PPV, Private Hospital PPV, Ambulatory Care Centre PPV, Integration PPV and Industrial PPV, as well as outreach programmes by GPs and NGOs.

“Several PPVs originally operated by the MOH are now under the GPs such as the Sunway Convention Centre PPV. A total of 52,451 doses were administered by the MOH starting April 26.

“The number increased to a total of 233,278 doses on Aug 23, when private medical practitioners took over starting June 21,” the statement read.

In the Klang Valley, it said 438,812 doses or 3.6% had been administered by 760 GPs, while 54 PPVs were run by health care organisations (HCO), of which 45 were among consortiums of GPs, clinic networks, private hospitals and university hospitals.

“Therefore, we would like to call on GPs, especially in the Klang Valley, to remain steadfast with us in making PICK a success,” said the statement.

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