Is The Covid-19 Vaccine Halal? Revisiting The Role of National Pharmaceutical Regulatory Agency (NPRA) and JAKIM
The urge to be vaccinated has increased rapidly during the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. Resorting vaccine products is seen as the only way to break the chain of COVID-19 spread and eventually stop the pandemic. To this dire need, many consumers face the dilemma to be vaccinated or to opt-out of the vaccination program when the safety issues of vaccine products are widely circulated. The Muslim consumers, particularly, experiences double worry on the issue of safety and halal status of the vaccine product. Due to the emergency call to have the vaccine in the market as soon as possible, the innovation and production were carried out in an expedited manner, and the necessity to have the vaccine be certified as halal was bypass. When the news on the vaccine product uses non-halal ingredients reaches the Muslim community in Malaysia, they were taken aback and demanded immediate answers from the authorities. Thus, in addressing this issue, this study intends to critically analyse the role of NPRA and JAKIM in ensuring the safety and halal status of a product with the aim of suggesting a review of the existing role. This article adopts a qualitative research methodology where interviews will be the supporting method to a library-based and doctrinal study.
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