World Are Covid Vaccines Halal? Malaysia Tries to Find Middle Ground

13:11  04 december  2020
13:11  04 december  2020 Source:   bloomberg.com

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If Malaysia can pre-book the vaccines for use by Malaysians , would it be possible for a combination of Pharma-GMP and halal audit to be This will ensure that compliance can be ensured right from the development stage for the Covid -19 vaccine supply. If the product is already in the clinical trial stage

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A health worker injects a woman during clinical trials for a Covid-19 vaccine at Research Centers of America in Hollywood, Florida, U.S., on Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2020. © Bloomberg A health worker injects a woman during clinical trials for a Covid-19 vaccine at Research Centers of America in Hollywood, Florida, U.S., on Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2020.

Malaysia’s latest challenge from the coronavirus pandemic is to allay concern among local Muslims about vaccine shots which could contain substances forbidden by Islam.

The Special Muzakarah Committee of the National Council for Malaysian Islamic Affairs met Thursday to discuss the use of the vaccine. The outcome is expected to be known next week after it is presented to the King for consent, state news agency Bernama reported Friday, citing Religious Affairs Minister Zulkifli Mohamad Al-Bakri.

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Muslim religious authorities have previously exempted vaccines from the stringent halal labeling in cases when no alternative is available. Still, concerns about the shots containing items banned under Islamic law, such as porcine DNA, continue to linger in Muslim-majority nations including Indonesia, Southeast Asia’s virus hotspot.

“Let’s not complicate the situation by taking a narrow jurisprudence opinion for the Muslim community,” Mohd Asri Zainul Abidin, a mufti, or religious head, for the state of Perlis, said in a Facebook post after attending the Muzakarah Committee meeting. “If the jurisprudence is for the nation and the general public, it needs to be positioned toward making things easy.”

‘Best Choice’

Malaysia last week signed a deal with Pfizer Inc. to obtain its Covid-19 vaccine that will cover 6.4 million people, or 20% of its population, starting early next year. The country is also on the priority list to receive a vaccine from China, which has been the subject of controversy among Muslims who doubt its halal status. The community makes up 61% of the Malaysia’s population.

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Covid -19 vaccines , including this one, are being developed in a co-ordinated way that allows some stages of this process to happen in parallel to condense the time needed, but it does not mean steps and the expected standards of safety, quality and effectiveness have been bypassed.

Vaccine is very unstable and needs to be stored at a super-cold -70C (-94F). He said homes fear they could face legal action if visits go ahead and there is a subsequent Covid outbreak, as He said: ‘If you take the Government’s advice then you might find yourself in hot water later because of that.

Asri said vaccines made from halal ingredients would be the “best and primary choice.” Even vaccines produced by treating and transforming forbidden substances into clean compounds are permissible, he said.

A growing cluster of infections that emerged in late September forced a partial lockdown across several states just as Malaysia’s $365 billion economy showed signs of recovering. New daily cases hit a record high of 2,188 on Nov. 24, of which more than half came from a cluster linked to the worker dormitories of Top Glove Corp., the world’s top maker of surgical gloves.

New cases have stayed above the 1,100 mark on most day since, data from the health ministry show.

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