In a special address on the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak, Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin has decided that all forms of gathering including international summits, sporting events, social and religious activities must be postponed or cancelled until 30th April 2020.
In the initial stage, the number of cases was small with just 22 confirmed cases and at one point, over 90% of cases were recovered. He also admitted that Malaysia is currently facing a second wave of COVID-19 outbreak and there are currently 197 confirmed cases in the country. According to the Ministry of Health, 39 new cases were reported today. At the moment, COVID-19 has been declared as a pandemic by the World Health Organisation (WHO).
The Prime Minister added that there’s an increase of new cases following the detection of two main clusters which involves Malaysian citizens. Looking at the current trend, the spread of COVID-19 is expected to continue for an extended period of time.
The government is taking the situation more seriously and they have increased its screening at all international entry-points into the country while imposing travel restrictions to affected countries. Malaysia has imposed travel restrictions for Hubei, Jiangsu, Zhejiang in China, Hokkaido in Japan, South Korea, Iran, Italy and Denmark. Malaysians are advised to defer all travel plans to the affected countries.
The Ministry of Education has also announced the suspension of all forms of an assembly including sports and co-curriculum activities. This will take effect starting this month until a new date is announced.
In addition, the government is also increasing the number of hospitals to treat new COVID-19 cases and there are currently 26 government hospitals and one university hospital that have the capability to handle COVID-19 cases.
The government is also collaborating with private hospitals as well as hospitals under the Defence Ministry in anticipation to treat more COVID-19 cases. There are currently 57 government hospitals and 170 health clinics around the country that can conduct COVID-19 screening. Hospital Sungai Buloh and at least one hospital in each state will be dedicated to treating COVID-19 cases.
The government is also increasing lab capabilities for COVID-19 testing. There are 22 labs under the Ministry of health and other labs under the Defence, and Agriculture and Food Industry Ministry.
[ SOURCE, IMAGE SOURCE ]