Covid-19 Self-Test Kits Demand Soars As Malaysians Stockpile

source-The-Star
  • Demand for self-test covid-19 kits soar as interstate travel ban lifts. 
  • The government intends to reduce the limit price for Covid-19 self-test kits, but not immediately. – Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin

Covid-19 Self-Test Kits Demand Soars As Malaysians Stockpile 

Pharmacies in this area anticipate a spike in demand for Covid-19 self-test kits this weekend as those who have been fully vaccinated begin travelling across state borders.

In a statement with Bernama, pharmacist Nur Ermalina Jadi @ Mohd Faiz, 30, said that since the government lifted the interstate travel restriction on Monday, there has already been an increase in the number of individuals who are purchasing self-test kits.

Her pharmacy sells an estimated 70 to 80 self-test kits each week.

“We expect to see more people buying the kits this weekend as they have time off from work to travel across states,” she added.

“For now, the majority of those buying the kits are people who want to travel by air or those who need to take the test for work.”

“There are also those who buy it as their own initiative to keep themselves safe,” she said.

She said that there is an adequate quantity of the kits on hand, and that the pharmacy has had no difficulty keeping up with demand.

Fatin Najihah Mohd Yusof, a pharmacy assistant who is 23 years old, says she has not seen a spike in demand, but her pharmacy is prepared in case it does.

“We expect the surge to happen by the end of this week or in the weeks to come. We are prepared and have stocked up to make sure we can cater to demand,” Fatin added.

Another pharmacist, who only wished to be identified as Lim, 42, said that he expects people to begin stocking up on self-test kits only when the government lowers the price limit.

“We anticipated a surge in demand once the government lifted the interstate travel restrictions, but so far it has not happened.”

source - aged care guide

“I believe people are also waiting for the government to announce a lower ceiling price before they start buying more kits for travel and to keep at home for emergencies,” he added.

According to Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin, who spoke on Thursday, the government intends to reduce the limit price for Covid-19 self-test kits, but that it would not be done too quickly.

He said that the Health Ministry and the Ministry of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs had considered reducing the ceiling price, but that the government had chosen to allow traders some time to adjust to the new pricing structure instead.

Self-test kits are now available at a maximum retail price of RM19.90, with a wholesale price of RM16.  

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