GEORGE TOWN, Aug 23 — Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow wants the federal government to accelerate the vaccination rate for states outside the Klang Valley.

He said Penang had applied for an additional 500,000 vaccine doses on August 6 but was only given a total 210,000 doses for the whole month.

He said the supply issue in Penang must be resolved immediately due to the increasing number of cases in the state.

He said the shortage in Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for the second week of August has also impacted the appointment dates and operations of the Covid-19 vaccination centres (PPV) in the state.

"Therefore, it is time that more focus be given to states outside of the greater Klang Valley to increase the current vaccination rate," he said in a statement today.

He said the state had written to the newly appointed Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob to bring up several issues for his consideration including the issue of vaccine supplies under the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme.

Chow said that as of August 22, about 77.5 per cent of the Penang adult population have received their first dose of the vaccine while 45.4 per cent have received both doses.

He had also raised the issue of an immediate need to upgrade medical facilities and equipment, including the setting up of Covid-19 treatment centres.

"This includes meeting the logistic needs of the patients and the medical personnel, food supplies and other related issues," he said.

He then called on Putrajaya to update, streamline and simplify the SOPs especially in relation to positive Covid-19 cases who are undergoing quarantine at home, Covid-19 assessment centres and operations centres to better manage cases.

Chow, in congratulating Ismail Sabri on his appointment as the prime minister, said Penang is ready to cooperate with the federal government in making its Bersepakat Selamatkan Keluarga Malaysia approach a success especially in leading the country out of this pandemic and economic slowdown as soon as possible.