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20 JAN 2021

PUTRAJAYA: Another 14 Ministry of Health (MOH) hospitals nationwide, involving 539 beds, have been designated as COVID-19 hospitals to specifically treat categories three, four and five patients, said Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah.

They are the Sultan Ismail Hospital (20 beds), Muar Hospital (24) and Sultanah Nora Ismail Hospital (28) in Johor; Serdang Hospital (108) and Selayang Hospital (56) in Selangor; Sultan Abdul Halim Hospital (60) in Kedah; Pekan Hospital (12), Jengka Hospital (50) and Muadzam Shah Hospital (28) in Pahang; Setiu Hospital (56) in Terengganu; Jeli Hospital (24) in Kelantan; Kudat Hospital (29) in Sabah; as well as Limbang Hospital (28) and Sarikei Hospital (16) in Sarawak.

He told the daily press conference on COVID-19 yesterday that the MOH needed to increase the number of COVID-19 hospitals following the current surge in cases.

“During the second wave of COVID-19, only two to three per cent of patients were under categories four and five, but its has now risen to 15 per cent and if we add the other three categories, it’s expected to reach 20 per cent.

“So, if we have 3,000 patients who have been identified, 20 per cent of 3,000 means 600 (patients) will need to be hospitalised,” he said.

In the meantime, Dr Noor Hisham said the MOH was still looking at and streamlining procedures for the monitoring of COVID-19 positive cases, which are asymptomatic and not risky, and for them to be quarantined in their respective homes as well as to ensure they comply with rules set by the MOH.

“We’ve suggested that they use the MySejahtera application for daily monitoring by health officials. If the house is suitable to accommodate the patient, we will advise them to stay at home. If possible, in a room with an attached bathroom, as well as to adopt physical distancing so as not to infect others,” he said.

However, he said patients from categories one and two, who are at risk, will be taken to the COVID-19 Quarantine and Low-Risk Treatment Centre (PKRC) for monitoring.

Commenting on claims by a woman that her husband was infected with COVId-19 while receiving treatment at the Serdang Hospital, Dr Noor Hisham said the matter, which has gone viral, was under investigation by the MOH, adding that there was a possibility that such incidents could occur between health workers and patients and vice versa.

“That’s why the MOH does not encourage visitors to hospitals as hospitals are high-risk areas,” he said, adding that the MOH was looking at methods to improve procedures to avoid infections among health workers and non-COVID-19 patients. -Bernama

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