I refer to the article “Diversity in vaccine types will be useful, says expert” (June 2).
The Ministry of Health said it would allow unregistered new Covid-19 vaccines to be administered to Singaporeans via the private healthcare sector, and that the Government would not subsidise the cost of these vaccines.
Those who get these jabs will also not be eligible for the Vaccine Injury Financial Assistance Programme for Covid-19 Vaccination.
I am trying to understand the Government’s position on these alternative vaccines.
If the Government is allowing people to take these alternative vaccines (subject of course to individual assessments by private healthcare doctors), it must think these vaccines are safe and useful, especially for those who are not able to take the two approved vaccines because of medical reasons.
If so, why is it withholding the two incentives – cost subsidy and financial assistance programme – to those taking these vaccines?
Perhaps the Government is trying to encourage people to take the two approved vaccines with their higher efficacy rates, which is understandable for the general population. However, for individuals who are not able to take these vaccines because of medical reasons, why should they be penalised for taking alternative vaccines?
Why is the Government allowing alternative vaccines to be administered via the private healthcare sector but qualifying its approval by withholding the privileges accorded to those taking the two approved vaccines?
Are the 30,000 people here who cannot take the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna mRNA vaccines subjected to any risks which the Government does not seem to be willing to bear?
We would appreciate a less ambivalent stance from the authorities, so the 30,000 people can decide better whether to take the alternative vaccines or not to be vaccinated at all.
Tan San Ling