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6 Feb 2021

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Medical Association (MMA) calls for urgently needed improvements in the Ministry of Health (MOH)’s handling of mild cases of COVID-19 (category 1 and 2) and their close contacts.

Its president, Prof Datuk Dr Subramaniam Muniandy, in a statement today, said that this is to eliminate confusion and prevent possible flouting of the home quarantine standard operating procedure (SOP), which can lead to an increase in community transmissions.

“MMA once again urges the MOH to revert to its earlier policy of testing all close contacts. The ministry’s current policy is to only test symptomatic close contacts.

“In its preventive measures, only isolating them will not be sufficient. The health status of all close contacts should be established early or there can be a risk of infections spreading among family members in the household and into the community if they breach the quarantine,” the statement said.

The statement also urged the government to increase efforts in educating the public on the home quarantine SOP and the MOH’s COVID-19 Assessment Centre (CAC), by frequently publishing it in all available media, especially in areas with high populations, in simple Malay, English, Mandarin and Tamil, to ensure it is understood by all Malaysians.

MMA suggested that the Communications and Multimedia Ministry (KKMM) increase its efforts to ensure that the MOH’s messages on the CAC and home quarantine SOP are well communicated at every level.

“We fear that not all individuals will be as responsible in taking the home quarantine seriously, hence we urge the government to urgently address these issues and make the necessary improvements, or we could see cases of COVID-19 rise even higher in the near future,” the statement said. -Bernama


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