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LETTER | Frustration, disappointment over AstraZeneca vaccination registration

LETTER | On May 26, 12.15pm, the AstraZeneca vaccine registration opened for the second time for those aged 18 and above who reside in Selangor, Kuala Lumpur, Johor, Sarawak and Penang.

Being a medical graduate who is expected to join the Health Ministry and serve as a house officer within the next few months, I sincerely hope that I could get the jab before starting my service not only to protect myself but also my family.

Hence, I volunteered to register in the second round of the AstraZeneca vaccine opt-in programme. However, the registration process was totally disappointing, from the 90 minutes of the booking process to the appointment notification thereafter.

As soon as the registration opened, I quickly signed in to book a slot for myself and my family. After multiple times of ‘verifying myself as a human being’, I managed to get a “thank you” note at the end of the booking, indicating that I had managed to book a slot for the vaccine successfully.

Nevertheless, the joy of getting a slot slowly turned into disappointment when I did not receive any notification after 48 hours of registration, and now two weeks have passed.

“For those who have managed to book and haven't received it yet, don't worry. You will see your appointment soon,” Special Committee for Ensuring Access to Covid-19 Vaccine Supply (JKJAV) responded on Twitter on May 29 when many were asking about their appointment notifications.

I understand that the fact that since many people signed up for this opt-in programme simultaneously, time is needed for the committee to process and to send out the notification accordingly.

I waited patiently, thinking that it wasn’t even 48 hours yet. However, I still did not see my appointment notification after two days (not even until today) while all my friends and family who managed to book a slot had already received theirs.

I made sure that all my details in MySejahtera and during registration were correct. This is after JKJAV responded to those who successfully grabbed a slot during the first round of registration but yet to receive their notification were most likely due to inaccurate information submitted during the registration process.

An enquiry email was written to JKJAV twice, on May 28 and June 11 respectively, but there was no reply. On June 5, JKJAV stated that people can now inquire about vaccination appointments via the MySejahtera helpdesk.

As soon as I read the post, I quickly reached out to the helpdesk regarding my issue. I received instead an auto-generated email, telling me that I will get their response within five working days. Five days had passed, and I did not get any reply.

“Please note that appointment details will only be updated 14 days before your scheduled vaccination date,” stated JKJAV on its website. I booked June 25 for my vaccination, and it’s just around the corner, and yet I still haven’t received any notification or response from them regarding my issue. I’ve reached out to them via email, MySejahtera helpdesk and private messenger to their Facebook page.

Many of my friends have also vented their frustration over similar problems regarding their appointments, such as an invalid date and time received, the date received was not similar to the date booked during registration and notification only received after their appointment date had passed.

Therefore, I am writing this letter to urge our National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme Coordinating Minister Khairy Jamaluddin and the JKJAV to take note of these issues.

I sincerely hope that relevant authorities could actively reach out and solve the problems faced by frustrated people who successfully signed up for the AstraZeneca vaccine but still haven’t received any notification for their appointments.

The views expressed here are those of the author/contributor and do not necessarily represent the views of Malaysiakini.

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