Immunise4Life chairman Prof Datuk Dr Zulkifli Ismail said today the issue of negligence had been incorporated in the Child Act 2001.
“If something is not done to protect the child (preserving their health), and that child is affected (by dangerous illness), we can take action on the parents,” he told Bernama when met at the 10th Penang International Halal Conference 2019, here.
Dr Zulkifli also said that unimmunised children had a high risk of being infected with harmful diseases such as diphtheria and measles, but they could not be prevented from attending school.
“If we stop the child from going to school, it's too extreme. This is because it is enshrined in the Convention on the Rights of the Child that the government should educate children at least up to primary school level,” he said.
As of now, the government has not made it compulsory for kindergartens and schools to request documentation of childhood immunisation.
Dr Zulkifli said initiatives should be taken to, at least, know the child’s immunisation status.
Earlier, State Health, Agriculture, Agro-based Industries and Rural Development Committee chairman Dr Afif Bahardin, in his opening speech at the conference, said the emphasis by Muslims on the halal aspect in terms of food and medical consumption had a huge impact on the global halal market.
He said that research conducted by the World Halal Secretariat showed that the global halal market in 2010 was worth US$2.3 trillion (RM9.37 trillion), with 67 per cent of it representing the food industry, 22 per cent the pharmaceutical industry and the rest other potential areas.
The conference, organised by the state government and Penang International Halal Hub (PIHH), will be discussing halal pharmaceuticals, medical tourism & hospitality, research and product ingredients, vaccination and immunisation as well as the healthcare industry as a whole.