The number of Covid-19 cases in the country climbed to 1,796 cases as of noon today.
Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin, in a live address, revealed that 172 new cases were recorded today and warned that the worst is yet to come.
He also said two additional deaths were reported, bringing the death toll to 17.
“I would like to state, from the onset, that the situation may become tougher.
“Covid-19 is a disease that we have never faced before. We never thought that our way of life could change in the blink of an eye due to a disease that has spread not only in our country but also the world.
“The rate of infection is rapid. Today, 422,829 people have been infected across the globe with 18,907 deaths,” he said.
He pointed out that just a week ago, Malaysia’s confirmed Covid-19 cases was at 673.
“I have been briefed by the National Security Council (NSC) that the number of Covid-19 cases will increase further if we do not take action.
“It may increase by many folds like in a number of other countries. In a way, the Movement Control Order (MCO) has somewhat helped control the spread of this disease,” he said.
During his address where he announced an additional 14-day extension of the movement control order (MCO), Muhyiddin also detailed the measures undertaken to prepare for any worsening of the outbreak.
“The government expects the number of new cases to continue to rise in the near future. Therefore, the Health Ministry has made preparations.
“This includes 3,585 beds at 34 hospitals across the country dedicated to accepting Covid-19 patients.
“At the same time, 34 percent of the bed capacity has been occupied and the remaining 66 percent can still accommodate new patients.
“If the number of Covid-19 cases increases beyond the existing hospital capacity, a few places have been identified as temporary isolation and quarantine centres,” he said.
Muhyiddin stressed that the government won’t be complacent in fighting Covid-19.
“We cannot be satisfied with the current measures until we record zero new cases,” he said. -MKINI
PETALING JAYA: Malaysia registered 172 new Covid-19 cases in the past 24 hours, bringing the total number of patients being treated for the deadly disease at hospitals nationwide to 1,796.
Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin, in announcing this, noted the sharp rise from the 673 cases reported a week ago.
“This means the number of cases more than doubled in only a week,” he said in a special address to the nation to announce a two-week extension of the government’s movement control order (MCO) to restrict public mobility.
The pandemic has claimed 17 lives in the country to date, the latest being a 66-year-old man this morning.
Muhyiddin said the government’s strategy for now is to identify, screen, isolate and treat Covid-19 patients.
He said the health ministry would increase its capacity to screen larger numbers of people.
“This includes mass testing, especially in high-risk areas,” he said.
He added that although the MCO had to an extent contained the spread of Covid-19, the government would not be satisfied until there are zero cases.
He said Putrajaya expects new cases to be recorded in the near future. However, he said the health ministry had prepared for this, with 3,585 beds readied in 34 hospitals nationwide.
To date, he said, 34% of beds in hospitals were occupied by Covid-19 patients.
“If there is an increase, we have identified several places as makeshift quarantine and isolation centres,” he added.
On Saturday, 409 sites, mostly government buildings, were gazetted as quarantine stations to house Covid-19 patients as part of the government’s contingency plans.
The buildings included community colleges, polytechnic colleges, teacher training institutions, government training centres and academies, the Seameo-Recsam campus in Penang, Tabung Haji hotel in Penang and the Hotel UiTM in Dungun.
On a related matter, Muhyiddin said he had instructed the health ministry to give doctors, nurses and hospital personnel their off-days in stages.
He said the same goes for policemen and army personnel who are on the ground. – FREE MALAYSIA TODAY
MKINI / FREE MALAYSIA TODAY