JOHOR BARU (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - All travellers entering Malaysia - including citizens - must verify their Covid-19 vaccination certificates with the authorities, said Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Adham Baba on Sunday (Sept 5).
"Malaysians who have been inoculated in foreign countries such as Singapore have to go to the nearest district health office to state that their vaccination has been completed overseas," said Datuk Seri Adham.
He said the office will then forward the information to the state Health Department to process and verify Covid-19 vaccination certificates issued by foreign countries.
After that, the Crisis Preparedness and Response Centre (CPRC) will be notified to issue a Malaysian certificate through the MySejahtera app, Dr Adham said after a working visit to the Mount Austin vaccination centre (PPV) in Johor.
He added that incorporating a foreign Covid-19 vaccine certification into the MySejahtera app was one of the improvements made to the system, apart from the introduction of a check-out button to facilitate the contact-tracing process.
"Regardless of whether they are Malaysians or foreigners, the important thing is that we want to confirm whether or not the vaccination certificate given abroad is genuine," said Dr Adham.
"It is also for us to know the type of vaccines they received."
He added that vaccination certificates would be checked and certified by health workers at the country's international gateways for those entering Malaysia.
Dr Adham said the move would also enable residents of Malaysia vaccinated abroad to be allowed to go about their daily routines, which would include complying with the standard operating procedures (SOP) set by the country's economic sector, New Straits Times reported.
On the travel bubble to Langkawi that would start on Sept 16, Dr Adham said health workers would also be stationed at the island's entry points to facilitate the tracking of tourists who have completed their Covid-19 vaccinations.
"We will also inform them about the standard operating procedures they need to follow throughout their stay in Langkawi," he added.
On a separate matter, Dr Adham urged the Covid-19 Immunisation Task Force (CITF) to increase the numbers of mobile PPV to hasten the vaccination process in several states, including Johor, before the monsoon season starts.
He added that there were currently 13 mobile PPVs in Johor and CITF should add seven more in the state.
As at Saturday (Sept 4), some 175,360 individuals in this state have received their vaccination through the 13 mobile PPVs.
"Of that number, 89,263 have received their first dose while 86,097 have received both doses.
"Some 261,457 doses have been given through the 13 mobile PPVs and if their number is increased to 20, more people in the state can get vaccinated soon," he added.
Dr Adham also said there are 364 PPVs currently operating in Johor.