High Vaccine Confidence Among Patients in Malaysia
Over the past year, biopharmaceutical companies have worked at an unprecedented speed to research and develop COVID-19 vaccines, treatments and diagnostics – supported by the innovation ecosystem along the way. As regulatory authorities continue to monitor the safety and efficacy of these innovations and authorize them for public use, it is important for patients to also feel confident in and accept inoculation once vaccine supply is available.
The Vaccine Confidence Project recently reported that Malaysia ranks high in the Vaccine Confidence Index with 91% of its population reporting they are confident in the safety and efficacy of vaccines. According to researchers at the University Putra Malaysia, driving factors include trust in public health care services and providers, as well as high vaccine risk-benefit-awareness and health-seeking behavior. This confidence is evident in the success of various vaccination programs conducted by Malaysia’s Ministry of Health.
To continue growing confidence among its public, Malaysian government officials should support decisions made by the National Pharmaceutical Regulatory Agency (NPRA) and allow the agency to practice vigilance with every review. Empowering communities through strong and transparent communications that are backed by science will also be important, as misinformation continues to threaten public confidence.
All COVID-19 vaccines follow a rigorous process for scientific evaluation like vaccines for other diseases. And each vaccine is carefully tested with tens of thousands of people. Clinical trial results are reviewed by independent experts prior to approval for use with the public.
Malaysia’s high vaccine confidence must not be taken for granted. As COVID-19 vaccine distribution ramps up, it is crucial for people to continue to feel confident in the safety and efficacy of the vaccine and decide to get vaccinated for the betterment of their health and those around them. The eradication of COVID-19 depends on it.